General Information: Etiologic agent of canine brucellosis. They are highly infectious, and can be spread through contact with infected animal products or through the air, making them a potential bioterrorism agent. Once the organism has entered the body, it can become intracellular, and enter the blood and lymphatic regions, multiplying inside phagocytes before eventually causing bacteremia (spread of bacteria through the blood). Virulence may depend on a type IV secretion system which may promote intracellular growth by secreting important effector molecules. This bacterium is the causative agent of canine brucellosis. The main sources of infection are vaginal fluids of infected females and urine in males. The most significant symptoms are late abortions in bitches, epididymitis in males and infertility in both sexes, as well as generalized lymphadenitis, discospondylitis and uveitis. Human contagion is not frequent, although it has been reported, and is easily treated. B. canis can be differentiated from the other species of the genus Brucella (except B. ovis) in that it forms rugose colonies.