Comparison of diagnostic tests for the detection of bovine brucellosis in the natural cases of abortion

Document Type : Full paper (Original article)


1 Department of Animal Disease Research Centre, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Ludhiana-141004, Punjab, India

2 Department of Veterinary Pathology, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Ludhiana-141004, Punjab, India

3 Department of Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Extension, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Ludhiana-141004, Punjab, India


Rapid and precise diagnosis in natural field cases of bovine abortion caused by Brucella abortus warrants the use of the most sensitive and reliable diagnostic methods. In the present study, bacterial isolation, serology, gross, histopathology, immunohistochemistry and polymerase chain reaction technique(s) were applied. Sero-prevalence studies showed the rate of 28.86% positive cases using the competitive ELISA. Histopathological changes were mainly seen in the placenta, fetal lungs, kidney, liver and spleen. Immunohistochemical (IHC) staining of Brucella spp. was evident as brown, finely granular intracytoplasmic staining in trophoblasts of placental sections and in section(s) of liver, lung, kidney and spleen. Twenty-eight out of the 103 samples (17 from stomach contents, 3 from placental cotyledons, 2 from vaginal discharges and 6 from pooled fetal tissues) produced 193 bp amplicon specific for Brucella genus. Moreover, the species-specific primers amplified a 498 bp amplicon which corresponded to B. abortus. Comparison of diagnostic tests revealed PCR and IHC provide a reliable test for the diagnosis of bovine brucellosis in aborted fetal tissue and placental cotyledons whereas serology is most important for detection of Brucella positive animals in a herd.


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