Brucella ovis IN SHEEP: SEROPOSITIVITY AND RISK FACTORS

Abstract Seroepidemiological study of Brucella ovis in sheep from Sergipe State was carried out to determine the seropositivity and infection distribution in rural properties and possible factors associated with infection. A total of 54 sheep properties were studied and 932 blood serum samples from animals older than six months were collected in the three regions of Sergipe State. All sera samples were examined by agar gel immunodiffusion (AGID). According to the serological tests, 46.30% (25/54) of the properties had serologic evidence of infection by B. ovis, with 4.40% of positive animals (41/932). Presence of sheep handler (OR=2.31) and properties with an area bigger than 50 ha (OR=1.98) were observed as factors associated with B. ovis infection, whereas the use of stall (OR=0.37) worked as a protective factor (OR=0.40). Thus, the presence of antibodies against B. ovis in Sergipe State was confirmed, and it highlights the importance of complementary studies to determine the specific health measures in herds to prevent this disease.