Assessment of protection from systemic infection or disease afforded by low to intermediate titers of passively acquired neutralizing antibody against bovine viral diarrhea virus in calves

Steven R. Bolin From the Virology Cattle Research Unit, USDA, Agricultural Research Service, National Animal Disease Center, PO Box 70, Ames, IA 50010.

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Julia F. Ridpath From the Virology Cattle Research Unit, USDA, Agricultural Research Service, National Animal Disease Center, PO Box 70, Ames, IA 50010.

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SUMMARY

Colostrum-deprived calves (n = 24) were fed various amounts of colostrum, colostrum substitute, or milk replacer to establish a range in titer of passively acquired viral neutralizing antibody in serum. The calves were then challenge exposed intranasally with a virulent, noncytopathic bovine viral diarrhea virus (bvdv-890). After viral challenge exposure, calves were monitored for fever, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, and diarrhea. In addition, viral isolation and viral titration were performed on specimens of nasal secretions, buffy coat cells, and serum obtained from the calves. Fever and systemic spread of virus were detected in calves that had viral neutralizing titer of 256 or lower. Calves that had viral neutralizing titer lower than 16 developed severe clinical disease manifested by fever, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, and diarrhea. Severity and duration of signs of disease decreased as titers of passively acquired viral neutralizing antibody increased. These results indicate that low to intermediate titers of passively acquired viral neutralizing antibody were not sufficient to fully protect calves from virulent bovine viral diarrhea virus.

SUMMARY

Colostrum-deprived calves (n = 24) were fed various amounts of colostrum, colostrum substitute, or milk replacer to establish a range in titer of passively acquired viral neutralizing antibody in serum. The calves were then challenge exposed intranasally with a virulent, noncytopathic bovine viral diarrhea virus (bvdv-890). After viral challenge exposure, calves were monitored for fever, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, and diarrhea. In addition, viral isolation and viral titration were performed on specimens of nasal secretions, buffy coat cells, and serum obtained from the calves. Fever and systemic spread of virus were detected in calves that had viral neutralizing titer of 256 or lower. Calves that had viral neutralizing titer lower than 16 developed severe clinical disease manifested by fever, leukopenia, thrombocytopenia, and diarrhea. Severity and duration of signs of disease decreased as titers of passively acquired viral neutralizing antibody increased. These results indicate that low to intermediate titers of passively acquired viral neutralizing antibody were not sufficient to fully protect calves from virulent bovine viral diarrhea virus.

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