A new immunocapture technique has been applied to the diagnosis of ovine brucellosis under experimental conditions. The tests were made on a serum bank derived from both young and adult ewes vaccinated conjunctivally with the Rev 1 strain at a dose of 108 to 109 colony-forming units. Adult ewes were infected experimentally two-and-a-half years after they had been vaccinated and the results were compared with an unvaccinated control group. The condition of each animal in terms of infection with Brucella melitensis was determined by clinical and bacteriological investigations. The development of the immune response was compared by the rose bengal test, the complement fixation test, the Coombs' test and the immunocapture technique for 180 days after the vaccination and for 410 days after the experimental infection, that is, the two following gestations. The results suggest that the new technique is more specific in animals vaccinated conjunctivally, regardless of their age when they were vaccinated. After the experimental infection, significantly (P<0.05) fewer of the vaccinated sheep which were free of clinical signs and were not excreting B melitensis reacted positively to the test.
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