08/21/2014 12:15 EDT

Alberta E. Coli Outbreak Source May Never Be Found, Doctor Admits

A culture of E. coli 0157:H7 bacteria grows in a petri dish Thursday, Nov. 29, 2007, at the Roman L. Hruska U.S. Meat Animal Research Center in Clay Center, Neb., where government scientists are working to unlock secrets contained in the genetic makeup of the cattle, and why E. coli contamination appeared to be rising. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

EDMONTON - Alberta Health Services says 122 people across the province have fallen ill in the past month from what it calls an outbreak of E. coli bacteria.

The agency says 17 of those who reported getting sick have been put in hospital.

Health officials say about 80 per cent of the victims dined at Asian restaurants, but they're not sure which food products might be the culprit.

Dr. Chris Sikora, AHS Medical Officer of Health, says it's a challenging process asking people affected by the bacteria to try to remember what they've eaten every day over the past two weeks.

Sikora admits the origin of the contamination may never be found.

There were 96 cases of sickness from E. coli bacteria in Alberta during all of 2013. (CTV Edmonton)

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