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Immunogenicity of the lipid A component of Haemophilus somnus lipooligosaccharide in cattle and mice was examined after purification, detoxification, and covalent conjugation to a protein carrier. After 2 inoculations, a substantial antibody response was induced in most cattle to lipid A and the protein carrier. To determine whether antibodies to lipid A would be protective, 5 x 107 colonyforming units of H somnus strain 649 were administered IV to endotoxin-responsive (C3H/HeN) mice. In one study, 8 of 13 C3H/HeN mice aborted when inoculated. In contrast, abortion did not result when mice were inoculated with the same dose of an isolate of H somnus normally found in the prepuce or with the rough mutant Escherichia coli J5. In addition, endotoxin-nonresponsive (C3H/ HeJ) mice were significantly (P =0.03) more resistant to abortion by strain 649 than were C3H/HeN mice, but inoculated C3H/HeN mice were only slightly more resistant to H somnus abortion, compared with control mice. Although a large antibody response to lipid A was detected, there was no significant difference in the immunized group between mice that aborted and mice that delivered normally. Thus, lipooligosaccharide and other properties of virulent H somnus strains may contribute to abortion in mice.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research