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Vet Pathol. 1990 Sep;27(5):317-28.

Entry and intracellular localization of Brucella spp. in Vero cells: fluorescence and electron microscopy.

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US Department of Agriculture, National Animal Disease Center, Ames, IA.


Vero cells were inoculated with the six species of Brucella (B. abortus, B. melitensis, B. suis, B. neotomae, B. canis, and B. ovis) and examined by fluorescence and electron microscopy. All Brucella spp. were internalized by Vero cells. In all cells except those inoculated with B. canis, the numbers of intracellular brucellae increased with time after inoculation. Intracellular brucellae were first seen within phagosomes and phagolysosomes. Subsequent localization within cisternae of the rough endoplasmic reticulum was seen with all species of Brucella, except B. canis, which was restricted to phagolysosomes. Although rough brucellae were more adherent and entered a greater number of Vero cells, intracellular replication occurred in a larger percentage of cells with smooth rather than with rough brucellae. These results suggest that phagocytosed Brucella spp. are transferred 1) to cisternae of the rough endoplasmic reticulum, where unrestricted bacterial replication takes place; or 2) to phagolysosomes in which Brucella spp. fail to replicate. The various strains of Brucella spp. differ in their ability to induce their own transfer to the rough endoplasmic reticulum.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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