|Etymology:||Genus name: named after Harold R. Cox, who first isolated the organism in U.S.A.
Species epithet: named after Frank MacFarlane Burnet, who first studied the characteristics of this bacterium.
|Significance:||The clinical significance of C. burnetii on ruminants in Sweden has not been established. However, one case with connection to reproduction problems in cattle has recently (2010) been described (see References).
|Type Strain:||ATCC VR 615.|
|Macromorphology (smell):||Cannot be cultivated on cell free substrates (e.g. agar plates).|
|Micromorphology:||Small nonmotile and pleomorphic rods (0.2-0.4 x 0.4-1.0 µm)|
|Gram +/Gram -:||G-|
|Spec. Char.:||C. burnetii is highly resistant to chemicals and high temperature. The bacterium can form an endospore-like body.|
|Vector:||Flies (mechanical vectors)|
|Disease:||Q-fever (query-fever) in humans and sporadic abortion in ruminants.|
|Virulence Factors:||The bacterium possess a type IV secretion system named icm/dot (intracellular multiplication / defect in organelle trafficking genes) to inject effector proteins (so-called Ank proteins) into the host cell. These effectors increase the ability of to the bacteria to survive inside the host cell.|
|16S rRNA Seq.:|
||Only one species has been described within the genus Coxiella, which is related to to genus Legionella (although not that close).|
|Legislation:||C. burnetii belongs to category B as a potential bioterrorism agent according to NIAID.|
|Comment:||Strictly intracellular. Grows in phagolysosomes, which is formed when lysosomes fuse with phagosomes. Extremely infectious and zoonotic. A single aerosol associated organism may cause Q fever. Farmers, slaughterhouse workers, veterinarians and others may contract the disease.|
|Reference(s):||No. 102, 103, 104|