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Tuberculosis Patient Tests Negative for Bacteria

A U.S. man with a rare form of tuberculosis may soon be considered "relatively non-contagious".

Physicians from the Denver hospital, National Jewish Medical and Research Center, treating Andrew Speaker say he has had two negative tests for TB bacteria and could be allowed brief trips out of his isolated hospital room if a third test comes back negative.

Earlier Monday, Speaker's parents and in-laws said he would not have traveled to Europe if he thought he was at risk to others.

Cheryl Speaker said in an interview Monday with ABC, that her son's actions were not reckless.

Speaker's father-in law, Robert Cooksey, who works as a TB researcher at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said that the family was told that earlier tests indicated that he was not contagious.

Speaker sparked an international health scare last week when U.S. officials announced that he may have exposed others to a drug-resistant strain of tuberculosis during two trans-Atlantic flights.

Last Friday, Speaker said he talked with health officials before traveling to Europe for his wedding. He says that doctors told him he was not contagious, though, he said, they preferred he did not fly.

CDC officials said they contacted Speaker in Italy and told him not to take a commercial flight home, but he flew commercially to Canada anyway.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.