[MARMAM] Brucella pinnipedialis in bottlenose dolphins: pathogenesis and transmission

Ignacio Vargas Castro ignavarg at ucm.es
Mon Oct 9 06:25:03 PDT 2023


Dear MARMAM community,

My co-authors and I are pleased to share our most recent publication
titled: New insights into the pathogenesis and transmission of *Brucella
pinnipedialis*: systemic infection in two bottlenose dolphins (*Tursiops
truncatus**)*.

You will find the open access publication at the *link*:
https://doi.org/10.1128/spectrum.01997-23

*Abstract: *The emergence of *Brucella* infections in marine mammals is a
growing concern. The present study reports two cases of systemic *Brucella
pinnipedialis* infection detected in bottlenose dolphins (*Tursiops
truncatus*) pair stranded together in the Cantabrian coast of Spain. Both
animals showed systemic lesions associated with the *Brucella* infection,
more severe in the younger dolphin, considered the likely offspring of the
other individual. Real-time PCR, bacterial culture, and whole-genome
sequencing were used to detect and characterize the *Brucella* strains
involved in both dolphins. The phylogenetic analysis performed on the
*Brucella* genomes retrieved revealed that the species involved was *B.
pinnipedialis* (ST25). Both animals resulted seropositive in a commercial
multispecies blocking ELISA but tested negative in the standard Rose Bengal
test. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of a systemic
infection resulting in various lesions associated with *Brucella
pinnipedialis* (ST25) in two bottlenose dolphins. It is also the initial
isolation of *Brucella* in the milk of a non-pregnant or non-aborting
female cetacean likely stranded with its offspring. These findings provide
new insights into the epidemiology and clinical impact of *B.
pinnipedialis* infection
in cetaceans and underscore the importance of continued diagnostic
surveillance to gain better understanding of brucellosis effects and
transmission in marine mammal populations.

*Importance: **Brucella* spp. are zoonotic pathogens that can affect both
terrestrial and marine mammals. *Brucella ceti* has been identified in
various cetacean species, but only one sequence type (ST27) has been
reported in humans. However, it is important to conduct surveillance
studies to better understand the impact of marine *Brucella* species on
marine mammals, a typically understudied host group. Here, we describe a
systemic infection by two related strains of *Brucella pinnipedialis* (ST25)
in a couple of live-stranded bottlenose dolphins, with more severe lesions
in the younger animal. Furthermore, *B. pinnipedialis* was first detected
in milk from a female cetacean that stranded with its offspring. Our study
reveals novel insights into the epidemiology and pathological consequences
of *B. pinnipedialis* infections in cetaceans, emphasizing the crucial
importance of ongoing surveillance and accurate diagnosis to understand the
impact of this pathogen on marine mammal populations.

Please do not hesitate to contact us for any questions you may have.

Kind regards,

Ignacio Vargas-Castro



*Ignacio Vargas Castro*

DVM, PhD Student

Viral Immunology and Preventive Medicine Unit (SUAT)
VISAVET Health Surveillance Centre & Animal Health Department
Universidad Complutense Madrid

Av. Puerta de Hierro, s/n. 28040 Madrid.
Spainignavarg at ucm.eswww.sanidadanimal.info
<https://www.sanidadanimal.info/en/>

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Technologies, in which those interested may exercise their right to
access, rectify, erasure or right to object the contents (article
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Regulation).

 Before printing this mail please consider whether it is really
necessary: the environment is a concern for us all.



El lun, 9 oct 2023 a las 8:40, Ignacio Vargas Castro (<ignavarg at ucm.es>)
escribió:

> Dear MARMAM community,
>
> My co-authors and I are pleased to share our most recent publication
> titled: New insights into the pathogenesis and transmission of *Brucella
> pinnipedialis*: systemic infection in two bottlenose dolphins (*Tursiops
> truncatus**)*.
>
> You will find the open access publication at the *link*:
> https://doi.org/10.1128/spectrum.01997-23
>
> *Abstract: *The emergence of *Brucella* infections in marine mammals is a
> growing concern. The present study reports two cases of systemic *Brucella
> pinnipedialis* infection detected in bottlenose dolphins (*Tursiops
> truncatus*) pair stranded together in the Cantabrian coast of Spain. Both
> animals showed systemic lesions associated with the *Brucella* infection,
> more severe in the younger dolphin, considered the likely offspring of the
> other individual. Real-time PCR, bacterial culture, and whole-genome
> sequencing were used to detect and characterize the *Brucella* strains
> involved in both dolphins. The phylogenetic analysis performed on the
> *Brucella* genomes retrieved revealed that the species involved was *B.
> pinnipedialis* (ST25). Both animals resulted seropositive in a commercial
> multispecies blocking ELISA but tested negative in the standard Rose Bengal
> test. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of a systemic
> infection resulting in various lesions associated with *Brucella
> pinnipedialis* (ST25) in two bottlenose dolphins. It is also the initial
> isolation of *Brucella* in the milk of a non-pregnant or non-aborting
> female cetacean likely stranded with its offspring. These findings provide
> new insights into the epidemiology and clinical impact of *B.
> pinnipedialis* infection in cetaceans and underscore the importance of
> continued diagnostic surveillance to gain better understanding of
> brucellosis effects and transmission in marine mammal populations.
>
> *Importance: **Brucella* spp. are zoonotic pathogens that can affect both
> terrestrial and marine mammals. *Brucella ceti* has been identified in
> various cetacean species, but only one sequence type (ST27) has been
> reported in humans. However, it is important to conduct surveillance
> studies to better understand the impact of marine *Brucella* species on
> marine mammals, a typically understudied host group. Here, we describe a
> systemic infection by two related strains of *Brucella pinnipedialis* (ST25)
> in a couple of live-stranded bottlenose dolphins, with more severe lesions
> in the younger animal. Furthermore, *B. pinnipedialis* was first detected
> in milk from a female cetacean that stranded with its offspring. Our study
> reveals novel insights into the epidemiology and pathological consequences
> of *B. pinnipedialis* infections in cetaceans, emphasizing the crucial
> importance of ongoing surveillance and accurate diagnosis to understand the
> impact of this pathogen on marine mammal populations.
>
> Please do not hesitate to contact us for any questions you may have.Kind
> regards,
>
> Ignacio Vargas-Castro
>
>
>
>
> *Ignacio Vargas Castro*
>
> DVM, PhD Student
>
> Viral Immunology and Preventive Medicine Unit (SUAT)
> VISAVET Health Surveillance Centre & Animal Health Department
> Universidad Complutense Madrid
>
> Av. Puerta de Hierro, s/n. 28040 Madrid. Spainignavarg at ucm.eswww.sanidadanimal.info <https://www.sanidadanimal.info/en/>
>
> This message is private and confidential and it is intended exclusively for the addressee. If you receive this message by mistake, you should not disseminate, distribute or copy this e-mail. Please inform the sender and delete the message and attachments from your system, as it is completely forbidden for you to use this information, according to the current legislation. No confidentiality nor any privilege regarding the information is waived or lost by any mistransmission or malfunction.
>
> The personal data herein will be collected in the file "Correoweb", under the ownership of the Vice-Rectorate for Information Technologies, in which those interested may exercise their right to access, rectify, erasure or right to object the contents (article 15-21 of Regulation (EU) 2016/679, General Data Protection Regulation).
>
>  Before printing this mail please consider whether it is really necessary: the environment is a concern for us all.
>
>
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