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Orphanet J Rare Dis. 2013 Sep 3;8:131. doi: 10.1186/1750-1172-8-131.

Glanders: an overview of infection in humans.

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Battelle, 505 King Ave, Columbus, OH 43201-2693, USA.


Glanders is a highly contagious and often fatal zoonotic disease, primarily of solipds. In the developed world, glanders has been eradicated. However, prior use of B. mallei as a biological weapon and its high mortality in inhalation animal studies has affirmed B. mallei as a biodefense concern. This threat requires the development of new glanders medical countermeasures (MCMs), as there is a lack of an effective vaccine and lengthy courses of multiple antibiotics needed to eradicate B. mallei. Here, we present a literature review of human glanders in which we discuss the clinical epidemiology and risk factors, potential routes of exposure, symptoms, the incubation period, and specific diagnostics. This review focuses on pulmonary glanders, as this is the most likely outcome of a biological weapons attack. Additionally, we outline current treatment regimens and propose a clinical definition of human pulmonary glanders infection.

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