State vet lab cultures brucellosis
by Wyoming Livestock Board press release
June 16, 2008
The Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory reported to the state veterinarian today that it has cultured Brucella abortus out of tissues from two cows from Daniel Wyoming. This is confirmation from the WSVL that the herd is infected with brucellosis. Official confirmation is pending culture results from the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Ames, Iowa.
Blood from these cows initially tested positive at a sale barn- the blood was sent on to the Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory where testing confirmed the reaction seen at the sale barn. However, since false positive blood tests can occur, the cows were sent to the Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory where they were necropsied and cultured. With culture, tissues are tested for the actual bacteria. In this case, the bacterium was cultured from tissues from both cows.
The Wyoming Livestock Board and USDA Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) plans to test the remainder of the cattle herd this week to discover if additional cattle may be infected. Once that is complete they will test neighboring cattle herds and complete investigations in an attempt to discover the source of the infection and determine if the infection has spread.
The Daniel cattle producer with the infected herd now faces some tough decisions. The herd must either be depopulated or undergo repeated testing and removal of positive cattle. Since his herd is now considered infected with brucellosis, if it is not depopulated the state may lose its Brucellosis-Free status granted by APHIS. Loss of this status would result in testing requirements for all cattle in the state when they are sold or move out of state.
This event indicates that the system the Wyoming Livestock Board has implemented has worked to detect the disease. Good cooperation and testing at the sale barn has helped prevent further spread of the disease.
A meeting to discuss the current brucellosis issue is scheduled for June 17 at 7:00 pm at the Pinedale High School Auditorium at 101 E. Hennick St. in Pindedale. Local cattle producers are encouraged to attend.