Neospora-like protozoan infection as a major cause of abortion in California dairy cattle

Mark L. Anderson From the California Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory System (Anderson, Blanchard, Barr, Hoffman) and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Immunology (Conrad), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, and the Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, Livestock and Poultry Sciences Institute, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, BARC-East, Beltsville, MD 20705 (Dubey).

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Pat C. Blanchard From the California Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory System (Anderson, Blanchard, Barr, Hoffman) and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Immunology (Conrad), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, and the Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, Livestock and Poultry Sciences Institute, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, BARC-East, Beltsville, MD 20705 (Dubey).

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Bradd C. Barr From the California Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory System (Anderson, Blanchard, Barr, Hoffman) and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Immunology (Conrad), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, and the Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, Livestock and Poultry Sciences Institute, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, BARC-East, Beltsville, MD 20705 (Dubey).

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J. P. Dubey From the California Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory System (Anderson, Blanchard, Barr, Hoffman) and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Immunology (Conrad), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, and the Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, Livestock and Poultry Sciences Institute, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, BARC-East, Beltsville, MD 20705 (Dubey).

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Richard L. Hoffman From the California Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory System (Anderson, Blanchard, Barr, Hoffman) and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Immunology (Conrad), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, and the Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, Livestock and Poultry Sciences Institute, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, BARC-East, Beltsville, MD 20705 (Dubey).

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Patricia A. Conrad From the California Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory System (Anderson, Blanchard, Barr, Hoffman) and the Department of Veterinary Microbiology and Immunology (Conrad), School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, and the Zoonotic Diseases Laboratory, Livestock and Poultry Sciences Institute, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, BARC-East, Beltsville, MD 20705 (Dubey).

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Summary

Ninety-five aborted bovine fetuses received from California dairies over a 4.5-year period had histologic lesions of focal encephalitis. Protozoa that reacted with Neospora caninum antiserum were detected in the brain of 88 of these fetuses and in the heart of 1 fetus. Sarcocystis spp schizonts were seen in the vascular endothelium of 1 fetus. It was concluded that a Neospora-like cyst-forming coccidian may be a major cause of abortion in California dairy cattle.

Summary

Ninety-five aborted bovine fetuses received from California dairies over a 4.5-year period had histologic lesions of focal encephalitis. Protozoa that reacted with Neospora caninum antiserum were detected in the brain of 88 of these fetuses and in the heart of 1 fetus. Sarcocystis spp schizonts were seen in the vascular endothelium of 1 fetus. It was concluded that a Neospora-like cyst-forming coccidian may be a major cause of abortion in California dairy cattle.

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