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Objective—To evaluate the endocrine and immune responses of steers challenged with infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus (IBRV).

Animals—12 crossbred beef steers.

Procedures—Steers were randomly assigned to IBRV– (control) or IBRV+ treatment groups. Experimentally challenged steers (IBRV+) received a dose of IBRV intranasally (8.0 50% tissue culture infective doses), IBRV– steers received a saline (0.9% NaCl) solution placebo intranasally, and each group was placed in an isolated paddock. At 72 hours after challenge, all steers were fitted with indwelling jugular catheters and placed into individual stanchions. Blood samples were collected on days 4 through 8. Serum was analyzed for concentrations of cortisol, interleukin-6, interferon-γ, tumor necrosis factor-α, growth hormone, and insulin-like growth factor I.

Results—From 72 to 144 hours after challenge inoculation, the IBRV+ group had significantly greater mean rectal temperature, compared with the IBRV– group; the greatest temperatures in both groups were observed at 72 hours. Serum cortisol concentrations were increased in both groups from hours 72 to 136 and serum interferon-γ concentrations were greater in the IBRV+ from 94 to 112 hours after inoculation. Growth hormone concentration was greater in the IBRV+ group at various time points, but no difference in insulin-like growth factor- I concentration was observed.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results indicated that IBVR challenge altered growth hormone concentration at some time points but was not associated with large increases in circulating proinflammatory cytokines.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To determine whether testicular needle biopsy is detrimental to testicular function in clinically normal bulls.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—6 mixed-breed mature bulls.

Procedure—A randomly selected testicle from each bull was biopsied with a 14-gauge needle biopsy instrument. Bulls were then evaluated over a 90-day period for changes in scrotal temperature and thermal patterns, ultrasonographic appearance, and quality of spermatozoa. At the end of the 90-day study, bulls were castrated, and testicles were examined grossly and histologically.

Results—Changes were detected in scrotal temperatures and thermal patterns and in the breeding soundness examination results during the first 2 weeks of the study. However, there were no long-term changes in semen quality over the course of the experiment. Hyperechoic areas were detected on ultrasonographic examination and corresponded to the areas of penetration by the biopsy instrument. Microscopic lesions that were indicative of testicular dysfunction were not found.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results indicate that testicular biopsy is a safe procedure in bulls. Testicular biopsy could possibly be used to further examine bulls that have less than satisfactory results for breeding soundness examinations. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002;220:507–512)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association