In two studies conducted from October 1999 to March 2000 and December 2000 to April 2001, adult black bears (Ursus americanus) were orally inoculated with 1.4–3.1×1010 colony-forming units (CFU) of Brucella abortus strain RB51 (SRB51, n =12) or 2 ml of 0.15 M NaCl solution (saline, n = 11). We did not detect a difference (P>0.05) in antibody titers to SRB51 in serum obtained before vaccination, at 8 wk after vaccination, or at necropsy at 21 or 23 wk after vaccination between SRB51-vaccinated and nonvaccinated bears. The SRB51 vaccine strain was recovered from tissues obtained at necropsy from one of six SRB51-vaccinated bears in study 1, but none of the six SRB51-vaccinated bears in study 2. Vaccination of black bears with SRB51 did not appear to influence (P>0.05) reproductive performance.
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Vol. 40 • No. 3