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Abstract

Objective—To determine the interval to provirus and serum antibody detection (via PCR assay and ELISA, respectively) in calves after experimental inoculation with bovine leukemia virus (BLV).

Animals—8 colostrum-deprived, BLV-negative Holstein bull calves (≥ 6 weeks old).

Procedures—Via IM injection, each calf received a fresh whole-blood inoculum (day 0) calculated to contain 2 × 106 lymphocytes. Blood samples for the ELISA and PCR assay were collected from calves immediately prior to inoculation and weekly thereafter for 7 weeks. Mean and median number of weeks to PCR-detected conversion of BLV status and seroconversion were calculated. Point sensitivity and cumulative sensitivity of the 2 assays were calculated at each sample collection. At each sampling time, the proportion of calves identified as infected by the cumulative weekly ELISA and PCR assay results was compared by use of a Fisher exact test.

Results—In 5 calves, conversion of BLV status was detected via PCR assay before seroconversion was identified. However, seroconversion preceded PCR-detected conversion in 2 calves. In 1 calf, both assays yielded positive results at the same test date. These differences were not significant.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In experimentally inoculated BLV-negative calves, conversion of BLV status was detected via PCR assay more quickly than via ELISA; this difference was not significant and probably not clinically important. The PCR assay may be useful as a confirmatory test in animals of exceptional value; tests based on viral identification may become critically important if vaccines against BLV infection are developed and marketed.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine serum lactoferrin concentrations (SLFC) in neonatal calves before and after ingestion of colostrum and to develop models that predict SLFC as a function of colostral lactoferrin concentrations (CLFC) in calves.

Animals—13 Holstein calves.

Procedure—Calves were fed 4 L of colostrum via oroesophageal feeder within 3 hours after birth. Serum samples were collected before ingestion of colostrum (day 0) and 2, 4, 6, and 7 days after birth. Colostrum and serum IgG concentrations were measured by use of radial immunodiffusion. The CLFC and SLFC were determined by use of an ELISA.

Results—Mean ± SD SLFC on days 0, 2, 4, 6, and 7 were 2.5 ± 1.6 (range 0.47 to 7.1), 6.0 ± 3.0 (range 2.0 to 16.6), 12.0 ± 12.4 (range 0.0 to 43.5), 17.1 ± 13.6 (range 2.2 to 39.4), and 13.6 ± 16.4 (range 0.0 to 43.8) mg/ml, respectively. The SLFC on days 6 and 7 differed significantly from SLFC on day 0. The model that best estimated SLFC on day 6 predicted that (SLFC)2 was a function of the logarithm of relative efficiency of passive transfer (REPT) and ([CLFC]2 × [REPT]2), where R 2 = 0.4. The model for SLFC on day 7 predicted that (SLFC)2 was a function of log(REPT), where R 2 = 0.44.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Definitive evidence for passive transfer of lactoferrin via colostrum is lacking, because SLFC on day 2 or 4 were not significantly different than day 0. Relative efficiency of lactoferrin absorption was directly related to SLFC on day 6 but inversely related to SLFC on day 7. (Am J Vet Res 2002;63:476–478)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Veterinary medicine has a unique role in modern society with regard to the production of a safe, wholesome, and economical food supply; protection from zoonotic diseases of livestock origin; and participation in the arena of biodefense. These roles are often collectively referred to as food supply veterinary medicine (FSVM). 1–3 Employment opportunities in FSVM include those in the private and public sectors, such as the traditional curative care of livestock; production medicine consulting services; pharmaceutical and biologics firms; and positions related to food safety, biosecurity, process assurance, and biodefense. Several authors 4–8 have asserted that the US veterinary

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

A series of surveys 1–3 supported by the Food Supply Veterinary Medicine Coalition has highlighted issues related to the supply and demand for food animal veterinarians in the United States. Food supply veterinary medicine (FSVM) embraces traditional preventive care and treatment of livestock; production medicine consulting services; pharmaceutical and biologics industry employment; and employment related to food safety, biosecurity, process assurance, and biodefense. In contrast to results for the KPMG LLP study 4 (often referred to as the Megastudy), several recent reports 5–11 have asserted that the training and supply of food supply veterinarians does not meet

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the use of a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay in detecting bovine leukosis virus (BLV) in adult dairy cows.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—223 adult dairy cows.

Procedure—Cows were tested for BLV status by use of an ELISA and a PCR assay. Sensitivity, specificity, predictive values of positive and negative tests, and the percentage of cows correctly classified by PCR assay were calculated. Ninety-five percent confidence intervals were calculated for sensitivity and specificity.

Results—Sensitivity and specificity were 0.672 and 1.00, respectively. Prevalence of BLV in this herd was 0.807. Predictive value of a positive test was 1.00, and predictive value of a negative test was 0.421. The percentage of cows correctly classified by PCR assay was 73.5%.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—A positive PCR assay result provided definitive evidence that a cow was infected with BLV. Sensitivity and negative predictive value for PCR assay were low. Consequently, PCR assay alone is unreliable for routine detection of BLV in herds with high prevalence of the disease. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003;222:983–985)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the prevalence of detectable serum IgG concentrations in calves prior to ingestion of colostrum and to assess whether a detectable IgG concentration was related to dam parity, calf birth weight, calf sex, season of calving, or infectious agents that can be transmitted transplacentally.

Animals—170 Holstein dairy calves.

Procedures—Serum samples were obtained from calves prior to ingestion of colostrum, and serologic testing for bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) and Neospora caninum was performed. Relative risk, attributable risk, population attributable risk, and population attributable fraction for calves with a detectable serum IgG concentration attributable to positive results for N caninum and BVDV serologic testing were calculated. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine whether dam parity, calf sex, season of calving, and calf weight were associated with precolostral IgG concentration.

Results—90 (52.9%) calves had a detectable total serum IgG concentration (IgG ≥ 16 mg/dL). Relative risk, attributable risk, population attributable risk, and population attributable fraction for calves with a detectable serum IgG concentration attributable to positive results for N caninum serologic testing were 1.66, 0.34, 0.014, and 0.03, respectively. Calf sex, calf birth weight, and season of calving were not significant predictors for detection of serum IgG in precolostral samples.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Prevalence of IgG concentrations in precolostral serum samples was higher than reported elsewhere. There was no apparent link between serum antibodies against common infectious agents that can be transmitted transplacentally and detection of measurable serum IgG concentrations.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To characterize gelatinases in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) and gelatinases produced by alveolar macrophages of healthy calves.

Sample Population—Samples of BALF and alveolar macrophages obtained from 20 healthy 2-month-old calves.

Procedure—BALF was examined by use of gelatin zymography and immunoblotting to detect gelatinases and tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-1 and -2. Cultured alveolar macrophages were stimulated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS), and conditioned medium was subjected to zymography. Alveolar macrophage RNA was used for reverse transcriptasepolymerase chain reaction assay of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), cyclooxygenase-2, and inducible nitric oxide synthase.

Results—Gelatinolytic activity in BALF was evident at 92 kd (14/20 calves; latent MMP-9) and 72 kd (18/20; latent MMP-2). Gelatinolytic activity was evident at 82 kd (10/20 calves; active MMP-9) and 62 kd (17/20; active MMP-2). Gelatinases were inhibited by metal chelators but not serine protease inhibitors. Immunoblotting of BALF protein and conditioned medium confirmed the MMP-2 and -9 proteins. Endogenous inhibitors (ie, TIMPs) were detected in BALF from all calves (TIMP-1) or BALF from only 4 calves (TIMP-2). Cultured alveolar macrophages expressed detectable amounts of MMP-9 mRNA but not MMP-2 mRNA.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Healthy calves have detectable amounts of the gelatinases MMP-2 and -9 in BALF. Endogenous inhibitors of MMPs were detected in BALF (ie, TIMP-1, all calves; TIMP-2, 4 calves). Lipopolysaccharide-stimulated alveolar macrophages express MMP-9 but not MMP-2 mRNA. The role of proteases in the pathogenesis of lung injury associated with pneumonia has yet to be determined. (Am J Vet Res 2004;65:163–172)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate 3 refractometers for detection of failure of passive transfer (FPT) of immunity in calves, and assess the effect of refractometric test endpoints on sensitivity, specificity, and proportion of calves classified correctly with regard to passive transfer status.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—90 calves.

Procedure—Blood samples were obtained from calves that were < 10 days old. Serum IgG concentration was determined by use of a radial immunodiffusion assay. Accuracy of 3 refractometers in the prediction of serum IgG concentration was determined by use of standard epidemiologic methods and a linear regression model.

Results—At a serum protein concentration test endpoint of 5.2 g/dL, sensitivity of each refractometer was 0.89 or 0.93, and specificity ranged from 0.80 to 0.91. For all refractometers, serum protein concentration test endpoints of 5.0 or 5.2 g/dL resulted in sensitivity > 0.80, specificity > 0.80, and proportion of calves classified correctly > 0.85. Serum protein concentrations equivalent to 1,000 mg of IgG/dL of serum were 4.9, 4.8, and 5.1 g/dL for the 3 refractometers.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The refractometers, including a nontemperature-compensating instrument, performed similarly in detection of FPT. Serum protein concentration test endpoints of 5.0 and 5.2 g/dL yielded accurate results in the assessment of adequacy of passive transfer; lower or higher test endpoints misclassified larger numbers of calves. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002;221:1605–1608)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine whether serum IgG concentrations in neonatal calves are adversely affected by short-term frozen storage of colostrum.

Design—Prospective study.

Sample Population—Experiment 1 consisted of 10 pairs of Holstein calves (n = 20) fed matched aliquots of either fresh (n = 10) or frozen and thawed (10) colostrum. In experiment 2, 26 Holstein calves were fed either fresh (n = 13) or frozen and thawed (n = 13) colostrum.

Procedure—Experiment 1 consisted of calves resulting from observed parturitions; calves were randomly assigned to treatment groups (fresh or frozen and thawed colostrum) in pairs. Calves were fed 4 L aliquots of colostrum via oroesophageal intubation at 3 hours of age. Serum IgG concentrations at 2 days of age were compared between the 2 groups by use of a paired t-test. Experiment 2 consisted of calves resulting from observed parturitions; calves were randomly assigned to treatment groups (fresh or frozen and thawed colostrum). Calves were fed 4 L aliquots of colostrum via oroesophageal intubation at 3 hours of age. Regression analysis was used to determine whether calf serum IgG concentration was a function of colostral IgG concentration and colostrum storage group.

Results—Significant differences were not observed between the 2 groups in experiment 1. No significant relationship was observed between colostrum storage group and serum IgG concentration in experiment 2. The model that best predicted serum IgG concentrations accounted for 20% of the variability in serum IgG concentration.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—Frozen colostrum is an adequate source of IgG for calves. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;219:357–359)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate diagnostic utility of a commercially available immunoassay for assessing adequacy of passive transfer of immunity in neonatal calves.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—123 calves.

Procedure—Blood and serum samples were obtained from the calves prior to 2 weeks of age. The immunoassay was performed, along with refractometry and an 18% sodium sulfite turbidity test. Serum IgG concentration was determined with a radial immunodiffusion assay. Sensitivity and specificity of the immunoassay, refractometry, and the sodium sulfite test were calculated by comparing results with results of the radial immunodiffusion assay.

Results—Sensitivity and specificity of the blood IgG immunoassay were 0.93 and 0.88, respectively, compared with 1.00 and 0.53 for the sodium sulfite test. For refractometry, sensitivity and specificity were 0.71 and 0.83, respectively, when a serum total solids concentration of 5.2 g/dl was used as the cutoff between positive and negative test results.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that the immunoassayperforms well in detecting calves with inadequate passive transfer of immunity. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002;220:791–793)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association