The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) this week released 42 years’ worth of compiled Salmonella data. The data, organized by age, gender, geography and more, is available for download as one large PDF or by 32 individualized reports. Th Atlas of Salmonella in the United States 1968-2011 includes the data of different serotypes of the bacteria Salmonella, data from human, animal and other environmental sources, and information to assist in comparing trends in salmonellosis.

While the report is 248 pages long, it is believed this is just a partial picture of the actual effect of Salmonella, as many cases of salmonellosis are not diagnosed or reported. The current estimate of average illnesses in the United States caused by the Salmonella bacteria family is 1.2 million illnesses per year. While there are over 2,500 varieties of the Salmonella bacteria, only roughly 100 of the varieties cause a majority of the human cases of salmonellosis.

Dr. Robert Tauxe, the deputy director of CDC’s division of Foodborne, Waterborne and Environmental Diseases,  said the data may help researchers and others assess what has happened and consider prevention more closely. “The more we understand Salmonella, the more we can make progress in fighting this threat all along the farm to table chain,” Tauxe said.