Brucella spp. (B. abortus, B. canis, B. melitensis, B. suis)

Brucella spp. (B. abortus, B. canis, B. melitensis, B. suis)

MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEET - INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCES

SECTION I - INFECTIOUS AGENT

NAME: Brucella spp. (B. abortus, B. canis, B. melitensis, B. suis)

SYNONYM OR CROSS REFERENCE: Brucellosis, Undulant fever, Bang's disease, Malta fever, Mediterranean fever

CHARACTERISTICS: Gram negative cocci or small rods, aerobic, non-motile, urease +

SECTION II - HEALTH HAZARD

PATHOGENICITY: All Brucella isolates are potentially pathogenic to humans; systemic bacterial disease with acute or insidious onset; intermittent fever, headache, weakness, profuse sweating, chills, arthralgia; localized suppurative infections; subclinical infections are frequent; <2% case fatality rate for untreated cases; may have long recovery period

EPIDEMIOLOGY: Worldwide, especially in Mediterranean countries of Europe and Africa; Middle East, India, central Asia, Mexico, Central and South America; common in those who eat raw caribou; occurrence often depends on extent of animal Brucellosis; predominantly an occupational disease of those who work with infected animals or their tissues

HOST RANGE: Humans, cattle, swine, goats, sheep, deer, caribou, elk, dogs, coyotes

INFECTIOUS DOSE: Unknown

MODE OF TRANSMISSION: Through ingestion, direct contact via skin abrasions and mucous membranes, and inhalation; risk factors include contact with infected tissues, blood, urine, vaginal discharge, aborted fetuses; ingestion of raw milk or cheese from infected animals; contact in abattoirs; laboratory-acquired (generally through aerosolization)

INCUBATION PERIOD: Highly variable; 5- 60 days; occasionally several months

COMMUNICABILITY: No evidence of person to person transmission

SECTION III - DISSEMINATION

RESERVOIR: Cattle (B. abortus most common) and other animals (see host range)

ZOONOSIS: Yes, especially from cattle

VECTORS: None

SECTION IV - VIABILITY

DRUG SUSCEPTIBILITY: Susceptible to tetracyclines and streptomycin or TMP-SMX; therapy usually consists of a combination of doxycycline and streptomycin

DRUG RESISTANCE: Resistant to penicillins and cephalosporins

SUSCEPTIBILITY TO DISINFECTANTS: Susceptible to many disinfectants - 1% sodium hypochlorite, 70% ethanol, iodine/alcohol solutions, glutaraldehyde, formaldehyde

PHYSICAL INACTIVATION: Susceptible to moist heat (121°C for at least 15 min) and dry heat (160-170°C for at least 1 hour)

SURVIVAL OUTSIDE HOST: Carcasses and organs - up to 135 days; paper - 32 days; soil - 125 days; blood 4°C - 180 days

SECTION V - MEDICAL

SURVEILLANCE: Monitor for symptoms; isolation of organism from blood or tissue samples; confirm by serological testing

FIRST AID/TREATMENT: Antibiotic therapy

IMMUNIZATION: Vaccines not available for use in humans

PROPHYLAXIS: None

SECTION VI - LABORATORY HAZARDS

LABORATORY-ACQUIRED INFECTIONS: Most commonly reported laboratory-acquired infection; 423 cases up to 1976 with 5 deaths

SOURCES/SPECIMENS: Cultures, blood, tissues, placentas, fetuses, urine, uterine discharges

PRIMARY HAZARDS: Exposure to aerosols; direct skin contact with cultures of infectious specimens from animals; ingestion (mouth pipetting); accidental inoculation; sprays into eyes, nose and mouth

SPECIAL HAZARDS: Most cases have involved exposure to Brucella organisms being grown in large quantities

SECTION VII - RECOMMENDED PRECAUTIONS

CONTAINMENT REQUIREMENTS: Biosafety level 2 practices for activities involving clinical materials of human or animal origin; Biosafety level 3 containment, practices and facilities for all manipulations of cultures and for experimental animal studies

PROTECTIVE CLOTHING: Laboratory coat; gloves when direct contact with infectious materials is unavoidable: gloves and gown (tight wrists and tie in back) for work with infectious material in biosafety cabinet

OTHER PRECAUTIONS: All procedures likely to generate aerosols should be carried out in a biosafety cabinet

SECTION VIII - HANDLING INFORMATION

SPILLS: Allow aerosols to settle; wearing protective clothing, gently cover spill with paper towels and apply 1% sodium hypochlorite, starting at perimeter and working towards the centre; allow sufficient contact time (30 min) before clean up

DISPOSAL: Decontaminate before disposal; steam sterilization, incineration, chemical disinfection

STORAGE: In sealed containers that are well labelled

SECTION IX - MISCELLANEOUS INFORMATION

Date prepared: November 1999

Prepared by: Office of Laboratory Security, PHAC

Although the information, opinions and recommendations contained in this Material Safety Data Sheet are compiled from sources believed to be reliable, we accept no responsibility for the accuracy, sufficiency, or reliability or for any loss or injury resulting from the use of the information. Newly discovered hazards are frequent and this information may not be completely up to date.

Copyright © Health Canada, 2001

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