The CDC found that the organism, Naegleria fowleri, has a “statistically significant northward trend” tracked since 2010. The trajectory may be a consequence of climate change with a surge in temperatures possibly assisting the speed where the amoeba may have not survived with different conditions.
The amoeba, which has one cell, inhabits warm freshwater systems such as lakes and rivers, as well as soil.
It can cause a condition called amebic meningoencephalitis that can lead to the inflammation and destruction of the brain.
Only five people are known to have survived the disease in North America.
Recently, at least two fatal victims of the disease have been recorded.
One of the victims was a thirteen-year-old child from Florida.
He died days after contracting the disease while he swam in a lake.
The other case was a six-year-old child who fell ill at his home in Texas last month.
The water supply in Lake Jackson city in Texas is currently undergoing extensive disinfection after Naegleria fowleri was found in it.
The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has taken on the arduous task.
Originally, a Do Not Use Water advisory was in force for eight cities in Texas.
However, the advisory was later removed from all cities except for Lake Jackson.
Speaking to Newsweek, a TCEQ spokesperson said: “The City has concluded extensive flushing activities and is monitoring disinfectant levels to ensure chlorine is getting through the entire distribution system.
“Of greatest importance in managing Naegleria fowleri is maintaining a disinfectant residual throughout the entire drinking water distribution system.”
They added that once the disinfectant degree is reached, it will have to be maintained for 60 days.
Jennifer Cope, medical officer at the CDC’s Waterborne Disease Prevention Branch, told Newsweek that details about the organism infiltrating the Lake Jackson’s water supply were unknown.
She said: “The ameba is found naturally in water and soil and can gain entry into a municipal system when there is a disruption in the distribution system, such as when a pipe breaks.”
She added: “Each year, hundreds of millions of visits to swimming venues occur in the US that result in just a handful of infections every year.