Prevalence of bovine group A rotavirus shedding among dairy calves in Ohio

A. Lucchelli From the Food Animal Health Research Program, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH 44691 (Lucchelli, Saif), the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210 (Lance, Miller) and the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (Bartlett).

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S. E. Lance From the Food Animal Health Research Program, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH 44691 (Lucchelli, Saif), the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210 (Lance, Miller) and the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (Bartlett).

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P. B. Bartlett From the Food Animal Health Research Program, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH 44691 (Lucchelli, Saif), the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210 (Lance, Miller) and the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (Bartlett).

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G. Y. Miller From the Food Animal Health Research Program, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH 44691 (Lucchelli, Saif), the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210 (Lance, Miller) and the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (Bartlett).

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L. J. Saif From the Food Animal Health Research Program, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH 44691 (Lucchelli, Saif), the Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210 (Lance, Miller) and the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824 (Bartlett).

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Summary

Fecal samples were collected from 450 neonatal calves ranging from 1 to 30 days old, between May, 1988 and May, 1989 to estimate the prevalence of bovine group A rotavirus in a stratified random sample of Ohio daily herds. Calves were from 47 dairy herds chosen to be representative of Ohio herds. Bovine group A rotavirus was detected in fecal samples by a cell culture immunofluorescence test (ccif) and elisa. Of 450 samples tested, 46 (10%) were positive by ccif and 67 (15%) were positive by elisa. The agreement beyond chance between the 2 assays was good (kappa = 0.65). The overall prevalence rate of rotavirus shedding was 16.4% (74/450). Forty-three percent (29/67) of the samples positive by elisa were subgroup 1, none were subgroup 2, and the remaining 57% (38/67) could not be assigned to either subgroups 1 or 2. Thirty herds (62.5%) had at least 1 group A rotavirus-positive calf (mean number of samples per positive herd = 12.4), and 17 herds (37.5%) had no rotavirus-positive calves (mean number of samples per negative herd = 6.0). A live oral rotacoronavirus vaccine was used in neonatal calves of only 1 herd and 3 of 17 (17.6%) calves from this herd were positive for group A rotavirus. The percentage of the rotavirus-positive fecal samples from all calves (n = 450) when stratified by fecal consistency was as follows: 28.3% (13/46) had liquid feces; 25.6% (10/39) had semiliquid feces; 23.4% (22/94) had pasty feces; and 10.7% (29/271) had firm feces. Of the rotavirus-positive calves (n = 74), 17.6% (13/74) had liquid feces; 13.5% (10/74) had semiliquid feces; 29.7% (22/74) had pasty feces; and 39.2% (29/74) had firm feces. The average age of calves shedding rotavirus was 14 days (range, 1 to 30 days). Double-stranded (ds) rna extracted from 36 samples positive by 1 or both tests was examined by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. All samples positive by this technique (30/36) had long dsrna migration patterns, typical of group A rotaviruses, including samples from calves in the herd in which the oral vaccine was used. Moreover, the electrophoretic migration pattern of group A rotavirus dsrna in these vaccinated calves differed from that of the rotavirus vaccine strain, suggesting the rotavirus strain circulating in this herd was not the vaccine strain. All samples negative by ccif or elisa that had volumes > 5 ml (n = 323) were also subjected to dsrna extraction and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis for detection of additional group A or nongroup A rotaviruses; none of them were positive by this technique.

Summary

Fecal samples were collected from 450 neonatal calves ranging from 1 to 30 days old, between May, 1988 and May, 1989 to estimate the prevalence of bovine group A rotavirus in a stratified random sample of Ohio daily herds. Calves were from 47 dairy herds chosen to be representative of Ohio herds. Bovine group A rotavirus was detected in fecal samples by a cell culture immunofluorescence test (ccif) and elisa. Of 450 samples tested, 46 (10%) were positive by ccif and 67 (15%) were positive by elisa. The agreement beyond chance between the 2 assays was good (kappa = 0.65). The overall prevalence rate of rotavirus shedding was 16.4% (74/450). Forty-three percent (29/67) of the samples positive by elisa were subgroup 1, none were subgroup 2, and the remaining 57% (38/67) could not be assigned to either subgroups 1 or 2. Thirty herds (62.5%) had at least 1 group A rotavirus-positive calf (mean number of samples per positive herd = 12.4), and 17 herds (37.5%) had no rotavirus-positive calves (mean number of samples per negative herd = 6.0). A live oral rotacoronavirus vaccine was used in neonatal calves of only 1 herd and 3 of 17 (17.6%) calves from this herd were positive for group A rotavirus. The percentage of the rotavirus-positive fecal samples from all calves (n = 450) when stratified by fecal consistency was as follows: 28.3% (13/46) had liquid feces; 25.6% (10/39) had semiliquid feces; 23.4% (22/94) had pasty feces; and 10.7% (29/271) had firm feces. Of the rotavirus-positive calves (n = 74), 17.6% (13/74) had liquid feces; 13.5% (10/74) had semiliquid feces; 29.7% (22/74) had pasty feces; and 39.2% (29/74) had firm feces. The average age of calves shedding rotavirus was 14 days (range, 1 to 30 days). Double-stranded (ds) rna extracted from 36 samples positive by 1 or both tests was examined by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. All samples positive by this technique (30/36) had long dsrna migration patterns, typical of group A rotaviruses, including samples from calves in the herd in which the oral vaccine was used. Moreover, the electrophoretic migration pattern of group A rotavirus dsrna in these vaccinated calves differed from that of the rotavirus vaccine strain, suggesting the rotavirus strain circulating in this herd was not the vaccine strain. All samples negative by ccif or elisa that had volumes > 5 ml (n = 323) were also subjected to dsrna extraction and polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis for detection of additional group A or nongroup A rotaviruses; none of them were positive by this technique.

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