Objective—To evaluate the efficacy of vaccination with the Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo type hardjoprajitno component of a pentavalent Leptospira bacterin against a virulent experimental challenge with Leptospira borgpetersenii serovar hardjo type hardjo-bovis strain 203 in cattle.
Animals—Fifty-five 6-month-old Holstein heifers.
Procedures—Heifers that were negative for persistent infection with bovine viral diarrhea virus determined via immunohistochemical testing and negative for Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona, Leptospira interrogans serovar hardjo, Leptospira interrogans serovar grippotyphosa, Leptospira interrogans serovar bratislava, Leptospira interrogans serovar canicola, and Leptospira interrogans serovar icterohaemorrhagiae determined via microscopic agglutination assay were enrolled in the study. Two heifers were separated and used for the challenge passage. The remaining heifers were vaccinated twice with a commercial pentavalent bacterin or a sham vaccine 21 days apart and subsequently challenged with L borgpetersenii serovar hardjo type hardjo-bovis strain 203. Urinary shedding, antibody titers, and clinical signs of leptospirosis infection were recorded for 8 weeks after challenge.
Results—Heifers that received the pentavalent bacterin did not shed the organism in urine after challenge and did not have renal colonization at necropsy. Heifers that were sham vaccinated shed the organism in urine and had renal colonization.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results provided evidence that a pentavalent Leptospira vaccine containing L interrogans serovar hardjo type hardjoprajitno can provide protection against challenge with L borgpetersenii serovar hardjo type hardjo-bovis strain 203. It is important to demonstrate cross-protection that is vaccine specific against disease-causing strains of organisms that are prevalent under field conditions.