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J Comp Pathol. 2009 Feb-Apr;140(2-3):149-57. doi: 10.1016/j.jcpa.2008.10.004. Epub 2008 Dec 27.

Pathological, immunohistochemical and bacteriological study of tissues and milk of cows and fetuses experimentally infected with Brucella abortus.

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Departamento de Clínica e Cirurgia Veterinária, Escola de Veterinária, Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais, Av. Antonio Carlos 6627, 31270-901 Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil.


This report describes a pathological, immunohistochemical and bacteriological study of 42 cows and their progeny (aborted fetuses, weak premature calves, and healthy full-term calves) infected at 6-7 months of gestation by conjunctival inoculation with Brucella abortus. Samples were collected at necropsy within 48 h of abortion or parturition. The most significant lesions were necrotizing and suppurative placentitis and lymphohistiocytic mastitis in cows, and fibrinous pleuritis, fibrinous pericarditis and bronchopneumonia in aborted fetuses. B. abortus was isolated more frequently from milk samples than from mammary tissues, and milk samples from cows with mastitis were often infected. Organisms were often demonstrated immunohistochemically and by culture in tissues showing moderate to severe histological changes.

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