Researcher who died after handling bacteria ID'ed

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Officials have released the name of the California lab researcher who died after handling a rare strain of bacteria.

The coroner identified the man Thursday as 25-year-old Richard Din of San Francisco.

Din died Saturday after friends rushed him to the San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center, where he worked. He had complained of flu-like symptoms Friday night that worsened quickly to include a full-body rash.

Din worked at the VA's infectious diseases laboratory. Lab officials told investigators that Din may have been exposed to meningitis as part of his research.

Harry Lampiris, chief of the hospital's infectious diseases division, says Din was regarded as a highly competent worker who was adequately supervised.

The death is being investigated by state and federal occupational safety agencies.