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Phenotypic and genotypic characterisation of Brucella strains isolated from cattle in the Gambia
  1. A. A. Bankole, DVM1,
  2. C. Saegerman, PhD2,
  3. D. Berkvens, PhD3,
  4. D. Fretin, PhD4,
  5. S. Geerts, PhD5,
  6. G. Ieven, PhD1 and
  7. K. Walravens, PhD4
  1. 1Department of Microbiology, University Hospital of Antwerp, Wilrijkstraat 10, Edegem, Belgium
  2. 2Department of Infectious and Parasitic Diseases, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Université de Liège, Boulevard de Colonster, 20, B42 Sart-Tilman, 4000 Liège, Belgium
  3. 3Department of Animal Health, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nationalestraat 155, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium
  4. 4Department of Bacteriology and Immunology, Veterinary and Agrochemical research Centre, Groeselenberg 99, 1190 Brussels, Belgium
  5. 5Department of Animal Health, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Nationalestraat 155, 2000 Antwerp, Belgium
  1. Correspondence to Dr Berkvens, e-mail: dberkvens{at}


Thirty-five serum samples and six hygroma fluid samples were collected from sexually mature cattle in one herd with clinical signs of brucellosis (abortion and hygromas) in the Western Region of the Gambia in order to isolate and characterise Brucella species. Information on the sex, age, number of calvings, number of abortions, presence of hygromas, and presence of orchitis was also collected for each animal sampled. Twenty-six (74 per cent) of the serum samples were positive in the rose bengal test and 29 (83 per cent) were positive by indirect ELISA. Three isolates of Brucella, biotyped as Brucella abortus biovar 3, were cultured from six hygroma fluid samples. The multiple locus variable number tandem repeat analysis assay clustered the isolates as B abortus with the same profile for the three isolates, suggesting a common origin of contamination.

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