Bacteria from the genus Brucella can infect many animals such as dogs, frogs, and seals, as well as humans. Some can cause brucellosis, a disease that can lead to fever, pain, and headache, as well as neurological or joint complications.
But what worries scientists above all is the emergence of new brucellosis bacteria in the animal world.
brucellosis : to Discovery of new bacteria in animals
Indeed, over the past 15 years, new species of Brucella have appeared It was discovered in animals. To deal with this phenomenon European project IDEMBRUcoordinated by ANSES. Its goal is to better understand these emerging bacteria. Among other things, the team has succeeded in developing more accurate diagnostic tools capable of identifying atypical brucellosis as well as “classical” brucellosis infecting unusual species.
We discovered three dogs carrying Brucella suis.explains Claire Ponsart, project coordinator and head of the zoonotic unit bacterial In the ANSES Animal Health Laboratory in prof communication. “These bacteria are known to circulate in wild boars and hares, and we didn’t know that dogs could become infected.”
Emerging Brucella: a test for predicting risk to humans
The researchers also developed a new test that can determine whether the emerging Brucella bacteria might be able to infect humans. This is a major concern when discovering new pathogens.
“We have developed a method for in vitro infection of cells that gives indications of their pathogenicity in humans. Until now, there are few indications of pathogenicity for these bacteria, and we have relied mainly on identifying the bacteria involved in the foci of infection.”describes Vitomir Djukic, a scientist in the Bacterial Zoonoses Unit, who was involved in the project.
Thanks to these different tools, scientists will be able to more easily identify new strains of Brucella that are potentially pathogenic to humans, and better understand the risks associated with the transmission of these bacteria between animals and humans.
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