Brucella as a Potential Agent of Bioterrorism
Gizem D. Doganay and Mehmet Doganay
Affiliation: Department of Infectious Diseases, Faculty of Medicine, Erciyes University, 38039 Kayseri, Turkey.
Perception on bioterrorism has changed after the deliberate release of anthrax by the postal system in the
United States of America in 2001. Potential bioterrorism agents have been reclassified based on their dissemination, expected
rate of mortality, availability, stability, and ability to lead a public panic. Brucella species can be easily cultured
from infected animals and human materials. Also, it can be transferred, stored and disseminated easily. An intentional
contamination of food with Brucella species could pose a threat with low mortality rate. Brucella spp. is highly infectious
through aerosol route, making it an attractive pathogen to be used as a potential agent for biological warfare purposes. Recently,
many studies have been concentrated on appropriate sampling of Brucella spp. from environment including finding
ways for its early detection and development of new decontamination procedures such as new drugs and vaccines.
There are many ongoing vaccine development studies; some of which recently received patents for detection and therapy
of Brucella spp. However, there is still no available vaccine for humans. In this paper, recent developments and recent
patents on brucellosis are reviewed and discussed.
Keywords: Biotechnology, bioterrorism, brucellosis, decontamination, diagnosis, patents, Salmonella typhimurium, polymorphonuclear leukocytes, bioterrorism, bioweapon
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