Tropical Animal Health and Production

, Volume 50, Issue 4, pp 903–906 | Cite as

Documenting the absence of brucellosis in cattle, goats and dogs in a “One Health” interface in the Mnisi community, Limpopo, South Africa

  • Gregory Simpson
  • Tanguy Marcotty
  • Elodie Rouille
  • Nelson Matekwe
  • Jean-Jacques Letesson
  • Jacques Godfroid
Short Communications


This study shows the absence of the world’s most common bacterial zoonoses caused by Brucella abortus and Brucella melitensis in cattle, goats and dogs in an agro-pastoral community in South Africa, where heifer vaccination against brucellosis with the live Strain 19 vaccine is compulsory. The study site is bordering wildlife reserves with multiple wildlife species infected with brucellosis. The results showed a low seroprevalence (1.4%) in cattle. Seroprevalence in cattle decreased with age after 4 years in females, males were less positive than females and a tissue culture from a brucellin skin test-positive male was negative. The results indicate that Brucella seropositivity in cattle is due to S19 vaccination and not natural infections. This conclusion is reinforced by the absence of Brucella seropositivity in goats (1/593 positive result) and dogs (0/315), which can be seen as potential spillover hosts. Therefore, the close proximity of brucellosis-infected wildlife is not a threat to domestic animals in this controlled setting with vaccination, fencing and movement control.


South Africa Transfrontier Conservation Area Brucellosis Serology Cattle S19 vaccine Goat Dog 



The authors wish to acknowledge the assistance of the Mpumalanga Veterinary Services and specifically the animal health technician Gypsey Mathumbo and veterinarians Oupa Rikhotso and Bjorn Reininghaus.

Funding information

The study was funded by a grant from the Belgium Institute of Tropical Medicine through collaboration with the University of Pretoria and research funds from the University of Pretoria.

Compliance with ethical standards

Ethics approval for the study was obtained from the University of Pretoria Animal Use and Care Committee (V026-12).

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V., part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hans Hoheisen Wildlife Research Station, Faculty of Veterinary ScienceUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  2. 2.Faculty of ScienceUniversity of NamurNamurBelgium
  3. 3.Department of Veterinary Tropical Diseases, Faculty of Veterinary ScienceUniversity of PretoriaPretoriaSouth Africa
  4. 4.National Veterinary College of ToulouseToulouseFrance
  5. 5.Faculty of Biosciences, Fisheries and Economics, Department of Artic and Marine BiologyUiT – the Arctic University of NorwayTromsøNorway

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