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1.  Is the presence of abnormal prion protein in the renal glomeruli of feline species presenting with FSE authentic? 
In a recent paper written by Hilbe et al (BMC vet res, 2009), the nature and specificity of the prion protein deposition in the kidney of feline species affected with feline spongiform encephalopathy (FSE) were clearly considered doubtful. This article was brought to our attention because we published several years ago an immunodetection of abnormal prion protein in the kidney of a cheetah affected with FSE. At this time we were convinced of its specificity but without having all the possibilities to demonstrate it. As previously published by another group, the presence of abnormal prion protein in some renal glomeruli in domestic cats affected with FSE is indeed generally considered as doubtful mainly because of low intensity detected in this organ and because control kidneys from safe animals present also a weak prion immunolabelling. Here we come back on these studies and thought it would be helpful to relay our last data to the readers of BMC Vet res for future reference on this subject.
Here we come back on our material as it is possible to study and demonstrate the specificity of prion immunodetection using the PET-Blot method (Paraffin Embedded Tissue - Blot). It is admitted that this method allows detecting the Proteinase K (PK) resistant form of the abnormal prion protein (PrPres) without any confusion with unspecific immunoreaction. We re-analysed the kidney tissue versus adrenal gland and brain samples from the same cheetah affected with TSE using this PET-Blot method. The PET-Blot analysis revealed specific PrPres detection within the brain, adrenal gland and some glomeruli of the kidney, with a complete identicalness compared to our previous detection using immunohistochemistry. In conclusion, these new data enable us to confirm with assurance the presence of specific abnormal prion protein in the adrenal gland and in the kidney of the cheetah affected with FSE. It also emphasizes the usefulness for the re-examination of any available tissue blocks with the PET-Blot method as a sensitive complementary tool in case of doubtful PrP IHC results.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-41
PMCID: PMC2923130  PMID: 20684771
2.  Spread of porcine circovirus associated disease (PCVAD) in Ontario (Canada) swine herds: Part I. Exploratory spatial analysis 
Background
The systemic form of porcine circovirus associated disease (PCVAD), also known as postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS) was initially detected in the early 1990s. Starting in 2004, the Canadian swine industry experienced considerable losses due to PCVAD, concurrent with a shift in genotype of porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2). Objectives of the current study were to explore spatial characteristics of self-reported PCVAD distribution in Ontario between 2004 and 2008, and to investigate the existence and nature of local spread.
Results
The study included 278 swine herds from a large disease-monitoring project that included porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) virus-positive herds identified by the diagnostic laboratory, and PRRS virus-negative herds directly from the target population. Herds were included if they had growing pigs present on-site and available geographical coordinates for the sampling site. Furthermore, herds were defined as PCVAD-positive if a producer reported an outbreak of circovirus associated disease, or as PCVAD-negative if no outbreak was noted. Spatial trend was investigated using generalized additive models and time to PCVAD outbreak in a herd using Cox's proportional hazard model; spatial and spatio-temporal clustering was explored using K-functions; and location of most likely spatial and spatio-temporal clusters was investigated using scan statistics. Over the study period, the risk of reporting a PCVAD-positive herd tended to be higher in the eastern part of the province after adjustment for herd PRRS status (P = 0.05). This was partly confirmed for spread (Partial P < 0.01). Local spread also appeared to exist, as suggested by the tentative (P = 0.06) existence of spatio-temporal clustering of PCVAD and detection of a spatio-temporal cluster (P = 0.04).
Conclusions
In Ontario, PCVAD has shown a general trend, spreading from east-to-west. We interpret the existence of spatio-temporal clustering as evidence of spatio-temporal aggregation of PCVAD-positive cases above expectations and, together with the existence of spatio-temporal and spatial clusters, as suggestive of apparent local spread of PCVAD. Clustering was detected at small spatial and temporal scales. Other patterns of spread could not be detected; however, survival rates in discrete Ontario zones, as well as a lack of a clear spatial pattern in the most likely spatio-temporal clusters, suggest other between-herd transmission mechanisms.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-59
PMCID: PMC3024231  PMID: 21190587
3.  Spread of porcine circovirus associated disease (PCVAD) in Ontario (Canada) swine herds: Part II. Matched case-control study 
Background
The emergence of porcine circovirus associated disease (PCVAD) was associated with high mortality in swine populations worldwide. Studies performed in different regions identified spatial, temporal, and spatio-temporal trends as factors contributing to patterns of the disease spread. Patterns consistent with spatial trend and spatio-temporal clustering were already identified in this dataset. On the basis of these results, we have further investigated the nature of local spread in this report. The primary objective of this study was to evaluate risk factors for incidence cases of reported PCVAD.
Results
A time-matched case-control study was used as a study design approach, and conditional logistic regression as the analytical method. The main exposure of interest was local spread, which was defined as an unidentified mechanism of PCVAD spread between premises located within 3 kilometers of the Euclidean distance. Various modifications of variables indicative of local spread were also evaluated. The dataset contained 278 swine herds from Ontario originally sampled either from diagnostic laboratory submissions or directly from the target population. A PCVAD case was defined on the basis of the producer's recall. Existence of apparent local spread over the entire study period was confirmed (OR = 2.26, 95% CI: 1.06, 4.83), and was further identified to be time-varying in nature - herds experiencing outbreaks in the later part of the epidemic were more likely than control herds to be exposed to neighboring herds experiencing recent PCVAD outbreaks. More importantly, the pattern of local spread was driven by concurrent occurrence of PCVAD on premises under the same ownership (OREXACTwithin ownership = 25.6, 95% CI: 3.4, +inf; OREXACToutside ownership = 1.3, 95% CI: 0.45, 3.3). Other significant factors included PRRSv status of a herd (OREXACT = 1.9, 95% CI: 1.0, 3.9), after adjusting for geographical location by including the binary effect of the easting coordinate (Easting > 600 km = 1; OREXACT = 1.8, 95% CI: 0.5, 5.6).
Conclusions
These results preclude any conclusion regarding the existence of a mechanism of local spread through airborne transmission or indirectly through contaminated fomites or vectors, as simultaneous emergence of PCVAD could also be a result of concurrent change in contributing factors due to other mechanisms within ownerships.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-58
PMCID: PMC3023701  PMID: 21190586
4.  Impact of antigenic and genetic drift on the serologic surveillance of H5N2 avian influenza viruses 
Background
Serologic surveillance of Avian Influenza (AI) viruses is carried out by the hemagglutination inhibition (HI) test using reference reagents. This method is recommended by animal health organizations as a standard test to detect antigenic differences (subtypes) between circulating influenza virus, vaccine- and/or reference- strains. However, significant discrepancies between reference antisera and field isolates have been observed during serosurveillance of influenza A viruses in pig and poultry farms. The objective of this study was to examine the effects of influenza virus genetic and antigenic drift on serologic testing using standard HI assays and reference reagents. Low pathogenic AI H5N2 viruses isolated in Mexico between 1994 and 2008 were used for phylogenetic analysis of AI hemagglutinin genes and for serologic testing using antisera produced with year-specific AI virus isolates.
Results
Phylogenetic analysis revealed significant divergence between early LPAI H5N2 viruses (1994 - 1998) and more recent virus field isolates (2002 - 2008). Results of the HI test were markedly influenced by the selection of the AI H5N2 virus (year of isolation) used as reference antigen for the assay. These analyses indicate that LPAI H5N2 viruses in Mexico are constantly undergoing genetic drift and that serosurveillance of AI viruses is significantly influenced by the antigen or antisera used for the HI test.
Conclusions
Reference viral antigens and/or antisera need to be replaced constantly during surveillance of AI viruses to keep pace with the AI antigenic drift. This strategy should improve the estimation of antigenic differences between circulating AI viruses and the selection of suitable vaccine strains.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-57
PMCID: PMC3023700  PMID: 21172021
5.  Unsupervised clustering of wildlife necropsy data for syndromic surveillance 
Background
The importance of wildlife disease surveillance is increasing, because wild animals are playing a growing role as sources of emerging infectious disease events in humans. Syndromic surveillance methods have been developed as a complement to traditional health data analyses, to allow the early detection of unusual health events. Early detection of these events in wildlife could help to protect the health of domestic animals or humans. This paper aims to define syndromes that could be used for the syndromic surveillance of wildlife health data. Wildlife disease monitoring in France, from 1986 onward, has allowed numerous diagnostic data to be collected from wild animals found dead. The authors wanted to identify distinct pathological profiles from these historical data by a global analysis of the registered necropsy descriptions, and discuss how these profiles can be used to define syndromes. In view of the multiplicity and heterogeneity of the available information, the authors suggest constructing syndromic classes by a multivariate statistical analysis and classification procedure grouping cases that share similar pathological characteristics.
Results
A three-step procedure was applied: first, a multiple correspondence analysis was performed on necropsy data to reduce them to their principal components. Then hierarchical ascendant clustering was used to partition the data. Finally the k-means algorithm was applied to strengthen the partitioning. Nine clusters were identified: three were species- and disease-specific, three were suggestive of specific pathological conditions but not species-specific, two covered a broader pathological condition and one was miscellaneous. The clusters reflected the most distinct and most frequent disease entities on which the surveillance network focused. They could be used to define distinct syndromes characterised by specific post-mortem findings.
Conclusions
The chosen statistical clustering method was found to be a useful tool to retrospectively group cases from our database into distinct and meaningful pathological entities. Syndrome definition from post-mortem findings is potentially useful for early outbreak detection because it uses the earliest available information on disease in wildlife. Furthermore, the proposed typology allows each case to be attributed to a syndrome, thus enabling the exhaustive surveillance of health events through time series analyses.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-56
PMCID: PMC3018415  PMID: 21162732
6.  An on-farm investigation of beef suckler herds using an animal welfare index (AWI) 
Background
Beef suckler farms (194 farms throughout 13 counties) were assessed once with housed cattle and once with cattle at grass using an animal welfare index (AWI). Twenty-three of the 194 farms were revisited a year later and re-evaluated using the AWI and the Tier-Gerechtheits-Index 35L/2000 (TGI35L/2000). Thirty-three indicators were collected in five categories: locomotion (5 indicators); social interactions (between animals) (7), flooring (5), environment (7) and Stockpersonship (9). Three indicators relating to the size of the farm were also collected.
Improving animal welfare is an increasingly important aspect of livestock production systems predominantly due to increased consumer concern about the source of animal products. The objectives were (i) to evaluate animal welfare of Irish beef suckler herds using an animal welfare index (AWI), (ii) to examine correlations between parameters, how they influence the AWI and investigate the applicability of the parameters used, (iii) to investigate the impact of the activity of the farmer (full-time or part-time), the interest of the farmer and the number of animals on the AWI.
Results
The mean AWI was 65% and ranged from 54% to 83%. The grazing period represented 16.5% of the total points of the AWI. Seventy percent of the farms were rated as "Very Good" or "Excellent". There was no difference (P > 0.05) in AWI between full-time and part-time farmers. Part-time farmers had greater (P = 0.01) "social interactions": calving (P = 0.03) and weaning (P < 0.001) scores. Full-time farmers had cleaner animals (P = 0.03) and their animals had less lameness (P = 0.01). The number of animals on-farm and the interest of the Stockperson were negatively and positively correlated (P = 0.001), respectively, with the AWI. A hierarchical classification was performed to examine how the indicators influenced the AWI.
Conclusion
The AWI was easily applicable for an on-farm evaluation of welfare. The Stockpersonship was an important factor in determining the AWI (11% of the total variation) more specifically, the interest of the farmer. Part and full-time farming did not differ (P > 0.05) in AWI scores. This method could, with further development, be used in countries with both intensive and/or extensive production systems and would require substantially less resources than animal-based methods.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-55
PMCID: PMC3022571  PMID: 21144023
7.  The role of African buffalos (syncerus caffer) in the maintenance of foot-and-mouth disease in Uganda 
Background
To study the role of African buffalos (Syncerus caffer) in the maintenance of foot-and-mouth disease in Uganda, serum samples were collected from 207 African buffalos, 21 impalas (Aepyceros melampus), 1 giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis), 1 common eland (Taurotragus oryx), 7 hartebeests (Alcelaphus buselaphus) and 5 waterbucks (Kobus ellipsiprymnus) from four major National Parks in Uganda between 2005 and 2008. Serum samples were screened to detect antibodies against foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) non-structural proteins (NSP) using the Ceditest® FMDV NS ELISA. Solid Phase Blocking ELISAs (SPBE) were used to determine the serotype-specificity of antibodies against the seven serotypes of FMDV among the positive samples. Virus isolation and sequencing were undertaken to identify circulating viruses and determine relatedness between them.
Results
Among the buffalo samples tested, 85% (95% CI = 80-90%) were positive for antibodies against FMDV non-structural proteins while one hartebeest sample out of seven (14.3%; 95% CI = -11.6-40.2%) was the only positive from 35 other wildlife samples from a variety of different species. In the buffalo, high serotype-specific antibody titres (≥ 80) were found against serotypes O (7/27 samples), SAT 1 (23/29 samples), SAT 2 (18/32 samples) and SAT 3 (16/30 samples). Among the samples titrated for antibodies against the four serotypes O, SAT 1, SAT 2 and SAT 3, 17/22 (77%; CI = 59.4-94.6%) had high titres against at least two serotypes.
FMDV isolates of serotypes SAT 1 (1 sample) and SAT 2 (2 samples) were obtained from buffalo probang samples collected in Queen Elizabeth National Park (QENP) in 2007. Sequence analysis and comparison of VP1 coding sequences showed that the SAT 1 isolate belonged to topotype IV while the SAT 2 isolates belonged to different lineages within the East African topotype X.
Conclusions
Consistent detection of high antibody titres in buffalos supports the view that African buffalos play an important role in the maintenance of FMDV infection within National Parks in Uganda. Both SAT 1 and SAT 2 viruses were isolated, and serological data indicate that it is also likely that FMDV serotypes O and SAT 3 may be present in the buffalo population. Detailed studies should be undertaken to define further the role of wildlife in the epidemiology of FMDV in East Africa.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-54
PMCID: PMC3022570  PMID: 21143994
8.  Relationship between clinical signs and postmortem test status in cattle experimentally infected with the bovine spongiform encephalopathy agent 
Background
Various clinical protocols have been developed to aid in the clinical diagnosis of classical bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), which is confirmed by postmortem examinations based on vacuolation and accumulation of disease-associated prion protein (PrPd) in the brain. The present study investigated the occurrence and progression of sixty selected clinical signs and behaviour combinations in 513 experimentally exposed cattle subsequently categorised postmortem as confirmed or unconfirmed BSE cases. Appropriate undosed or saline inoculated controls were examined similarly and the data analysed to explore the possible occurrence of BSE-specific clinical expression in animals unconfirmed by postmortem examinations.
Results
Based on the display of selected behavioural, sensory and locomotor changes, 20 (67%) orally dosed and 17 (77%) intracerebrally inoculated pathologically confirmed BSE cases and 21 (13%) orally dosed and 18 (6%) intracerebrally inoculated but unconfirmed cases were considered clinical BSE suspects. None of 103 controls showed significant signs and were all negative on diagnostic postmortem examinations. Signs indicative of BSE suspects, particularly over-reactivity and ataxia, were more frequently displayed in confirmed cases with vacuolar changes in the brain. The display of several BSE-associated signs over time, including repeated startle responses and nervousness, was significantly more frequent in confirmed BSE cases compared to controls, but these two signs were also significantly more frequent in orally dosed cattle unconfirmed by postmortem examinations.
Conclusions
The findings confirm that in experimentally infected cattle clinical abnormalities indicative of BSE are accompanied by vacuolar changes and PrPd accumulation in the brainstem. The presence of more frequently expressed signs in cases with vacuolar changes is consistent with this pathology representing a more advanced stage of disease. That BSE-like signs or sign combinations occur in inoculated animals that were not confirmed as BSE cases by postmortem examinations requires further study to investigate the potential causal relationship with prion disease.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-53
PMCID: PMC3019182  PMID: 21143919
9.  Prevalence and analysis of Pseudomonas aeruginosa in chinchillas 
Background
Chinchillas (Chinchilla laniger) are popular as pets and are often used as laboratory animals for various studies. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a major infectious agent that causes otitis media, pneumonia, septicaemia enteritis, and sudden death in chinchillas. This bacterium is also a leading cause of nosocomial infections in humans. To prevent propagation of P. aeruginosa infection among humans and animals, detailed characteristics of the isolates, including antibiotic susceptibility and genetic features, are needed. In this study, we surveyed P. aeruginosa distribution in chinchillas bred as pets or laboratory animals. We also characterized the isolates from these chinchillas by testing for antibiotic susceptibility and by gene analysis.
Results
P. aeruginosa was isolated from 41.8% of the 67 chinchillas included in the study. Slide agglutination and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis discriminated 5 serotypes and 7 unique patterns, respectively. For the antibiotic susceptibility test, 40.9% of isolates were susceptible to gentamicin, 77.3% to ciprofloxacin, 77.3% to imipenem, and 72.7% to ceftazidime. DNA analyses confirmed that none of the isolates contained the gene encoding extended-spectrum β-lactamases; however, 2 of the total 23 isolates were found to have a gene similar to the pilL gene that has been identified in the pathogenicity island of a clinical isolate of P. aeruginosa.
Conclusions
P. aeruginosa is widely spread in chinchillas, including strains with reduced susceptibility to the antibiotics and highly virulent strains. The periodic monitoring should be performed to help prevent the propagation of this pathogen and reduce the risk of infection from chinchillas to humans.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-52
PMCID: PMC2994850  PMID: 21083906
10.  Serosurvey for selected pathogens in Iberian roe deer 
Background
The roe deer is the most abundant and widespread wild Eurasian cervid. Its populations are expanding and increasingly in contact with livestock. This may affect the distribution of infectious diseases shared with other wild and domestic ungulates.
Methods
We investigated the antibody seroprevalence against Pestivirus, Herpesvirus, Bluetongue (BT) virus, M. avium paratuberculosis (MAP), and Brucella sp. in 519 roe deer from different regions in Spain, south-western Europe.
Results
No antibodies were detected against BT and Brucella sp. However, antibodies were detected against Pestivirus (1.5%), Herpesvirus (0.2%) and MAP (9.2%). MAP antibodies were detected in seven of the eight populations (range 5-16.4%).
Conclusions
The detection of MAP antibodies in samples from most roe deer populations suggests that contact with MAP is widespread in this wildlife species. The highest prevalence was detected in sites with abundant dairy cattle and frequent use of liquid manure on pastures. Considering the results obtained regarding exposure to different pathogens, we suggest that antibody prevalences in this non-gregarious browser are largely determined by environmental factors, potentially modulating vector populations or pathogen survival in the environment.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-51
PMCID: PMC2994849  PMID: 21078207
11.  Antibody response to a sterile filtered PPD tuberculin in M. bovis infected and M. bovis sensitized cattle 
Background
Bovine tuberculosis, caused by Mycobacterium bovis, afflicts approximately 50 million cattle worldwide and is detected by the tuberculin skin test (TST). While it has long been recognized that purified protein derivative (PPD) tuberculin is composed of a mixture of M. bovis derived protein components, little is known about the quality, relative quantity and identity of the proteins that make up PPD tuberculin. We manufactured a sterile filtered PPD tuberculin (SF-PPD) from a nine-week-old M. bovis culture supernatant in order to characterise the culture filtrate proteins (CFP) which make up M. bovis PPD tuberculin and to compare the antibody response of M. bovis infected versus M. bovis sensitized cattle.
Results
SF-PPD resolved into approximately 200 discrete spots using two-dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis (2-DE) while fewer than 65 spots could be discerned from 2-DE gels of tuberculin derived from autoclaved culture supernatant. Two dimensional Western blot analyses indicated that sera from M. bovis sensitized cattle recognized additional SF-PPD antigens as compared to M. bovis infected cattle at seven weeks post infection/sensitization. However, application of a comparative tuberculin skin test resulted in an antibody boosting response to the same set of M. bovis CFPs in both the M. bovis infected and M. bovis sensitized cattle.
Conclusions
We concluded that it is the heat sterilization of the M. bovis CFPs that causes severe structural changes to the M. bovis proteins. This work suggests that M. bovis infected cattle and cattle artificially sensitized to M. bovis with an injection of heat killed cells exhibit similar antibody responses to M. bovis antigens.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-50
PMCID: PMC2994848  PMID: 21062483
12.  Ovine serum biomarkers of early and late phase scrapie 
Background
Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies are fatal neurodegenerative disease occurring in animals and humans for which no ante-mortem diagnostic test in biological fluids is available. In such pathologies, detection of the pathological form of the prion protein (i.e., the causative factor) in blood is difficult and therefore identification of new biomarkers implicated in the pathway of prion infection is relevant.
Methods
In this study we used the SELDI-TOF MS technology to analyze a large number of serum samples from control sheep and animals with early phase or late phase scrapie. A few potential low molecular weight biomarkers were selected by statistical methods and, after a training analysis, a protein signature pattern, which discriminates between early phase scrapie samples and control sera was identified.
Results
The combination of early phase biomarkers showed a sensitivity of 87% and specificity of 90% for all studied sheep in the early stage of the disease. One of these potential biomarkers was identified and validated in a SELDI-TOF MS kinetic study of sera from Syrian hamsters infected by scrapie, by western blot analysis and ELISA quantitation.
Conclusions
Differential protein expression profiling allows establishing a TSE diagnostic in scrapie sheep, in the early phase of the disease. Some proteic differences observed in scrapie sheep exist in infected hamsters. Further studies are being performed to identify all the discriminant biomarkers of interest and to test our potential markers in a new cohort of animals.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-49
PMCID: PMC2988006  PMID: 21044301
13.  Micro ecosystems from feed industry surfaces: a survival and biofilm study of Salmonella versus host resident flora strains 
Background
The presence of Salmonella enterica serovars in feed ingredients, products and processing facilities is a well recognized problem worldwide. In Norwegian feed factories, strict control measures are implemented to avoid establishment and spreading of Salmonella throughout the processing chain. There is limited knowledge on the presence and survival of the resident microflora in feed production plants. Information on interactions between Salmonella and other bacteria in feed production plants and how they affect survival and biofilm formation of Salmonella is also limited. The aim of this study was to identify resident microbiota found in feed production environments, and to compare the survival of resident flora strains and Salmonella to stress factors typically found in feed processing environments. Moreover, the role of dominant resident flora strains in the biofilm development of Salmonella was determined.
Results
Surface microflora characterization from two feed productions plants, by means of 16 S rDNA sequencing, revealed a wide diversity of bacteria. Survival, disinfection and biofilm formation experiments were conducted on selected dominant resident flora strains and Salmonella. Results showed higher survival properties by resident flora isolates for desiccation, and disinfection compared to Salmonella isolates. Dual-species biofilms favored Salmonella growth compared to Salmonella in mono-species biofilms, with biovolume increases of 2.8-fold and 3.2-fold in the presence of Staphylococcus and Pseudomonas, respectively.
Conclusions
These results offer an overview of the microflora composition found in feed industry processing environments, their survival under relevant stresses and their potential effect on biofilm formation in the presence of Salmonella. Eliminating the establishment of resident flora isolates in feed industry surfaces is therefore of interest for impeding conditions for Salmonella colonization and growth on feed industry surfaces. In-depth investigations are still needed to determine whether resident flora has a definite role in the persistence of Salmonella in feed processing environments.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-48
PMCID: PMC2989951  PMID: 21044298
14.  Correlations between periparturient serum concentrations of non-esterified fatty acids, beta-hydroxybutyric acid, bilirubin, and urea and the occurrence of clinical and subclinical postpartum bovine endometritis 
Background
Postpartum endometritis in cattle is a multifactorial disease with high economic impact. Both, clinical endometritis (CE) and subclinical endometritis (SCE) result in decreased reproductive performance. Results from in vitro studies led to the implication that non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA), beta-hydroxybutyric acid (BHBA), bilirubin, and urea could be used as predictors for endometritis in veterinary practice. In this field study, we set out to establish optimal predictor cut points of these metabolic parameters for the detection of CE and SCE. Serum samples were collected one week prior to parturition (wk -1), in the first week postpartum (wk +1) and between 28 and 35 days postpartum (wk +5) from 209 Holstein-Friesian cows. At wk +5, all cows were examined for signs of CE and SCE.
Results
Higher concentrations of urea at wk +1 were associated with increased odds of CE (OR = 1.7, P = 0.04) in primiparous (PP) cows. A predictor cut point of 3.9 mmol/L (sensitivity: 61%, specificity: 70%) was determined. In multiparous (MP) cows, the logistic regression model revealed that higher concentrations of NEFA at wk -1 were associated with increased odds of CE and SCE (healthy vs. CE: OR = 9.1, P = 0.05; healthy vs. SCE: OR = 12.1, P = 0.04). A predictor cut point of 0.3 mmol/L (sensitivity: 38%, specificity: 87% and sensitivity: 35%, specificity: 89%, respectively) was determined. Increasing concentrations of urea at wk +5 were associated with decreased odds of CE (healthy vs. CE: OR = 0.6, P = 0.01; SCE vs. CE: OR = 0.5, P = 0.03). A predictor cut point of 3.8 mmol/L (sensitivity: 52%, specificity: 81%) was determined. For BHBA and bilirubin relationships with CE or SCE were not detected.
Conclusions
The corresponding combinations of sensitivity and specificity of the determined predictor cut points were not satisfactory for practical use. Thus, the analysed parameters, i.e. NEFA, BHBA, bilirubin, and urea, at the chosen time points, i.e. at wk -1, at wk +1, and at wk +5 relative to calving, are unsatisfactory for disease prediction. Further research is required to clarify the questions raised by the current study.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-47
PMCID: PMC2988005  PMID: 20979598
15.  Tissue distribution of cloxacillin after intramammary administration in the isolated perfused bovine udder 
Background
Various intramammary suspensions containing cloxacillin benzathine are registered for use in cattle as antibiotics for intramammary use at drying off. To ensure antibacterial efficacy, the glandular tissue concentration of an antimicrobial agent must be sufficient. Since the possibilities to measure concentrations in the different areas of the glandular tissue in vivo are very limited, it was the aim of the present study to examine the distribution of cloxacillin in vitro using the isolated perfused bovine udder.
Methods
Mammary glands taken at slaughter from healthy lactating cows were perfused in vitro with warmed and gassed Tyrode solution. 600 mg cloxacillin benzathine were administered as Orbenin Extra Dry Cow by the intramammary route to six front and rear quarters each. Samples of glandular tissue - at different distances from and vertical to the teat right up to the udder base - were gathered from the treated quarters after 6 h. Perfusate was also sampled before and hourly after treatment for 6 h. The cloxacillin content of the tissue samples and perfusate samples was analysed by high performance liquid chromatography.
Results
The concentration of cloxacillin in the glandular tissue of front quarters measured 6 h after administration tended to decrease with increasing vertical distance from the teat. The decrease pattern of the concentration was not quite clear in rear quarters. A considerable variation in the tissue concentrations of cloxacillin was obvious, which reflects in vivo conditions. The concentrations measured in the perfusate samples were below the limit of quantification at all time points, indicating limited absorption of the antibiotic from the glandular tissue.
Conclusion
After intramammary administration of the dry off product containing cloxacillin benzathine concentrations of more than 0.5 μg/g (MIC) were reached in all regions of the front and rear quarters.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-46
PMCID: PMC2959039  PMID: 20925913
16.  Two initial vaccinations with the Bm86-based Gavacplus vaccine against Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus induce similar reproductive suppression to three initial vaccinations under production conditions 
Background
The cattle tick, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, affects livestock production in many regions of the world. Up to now, the widespread use of chemical acaricides has led to the selection of acaricide-resistant ticks and to environmental contamination. Gavacplus is a subunit vaccine based on the recombinant Bm86 tick antigen expressed in yeast, capable to control infestations of R. microplus under controlled and production conditions. The vaccine constitutes the core element of broad control programs against this ectoparasite, in which acquired immunity in cattle to Bm86 is combined with a rational use of acaricides. At present, the conventional vaccine scheme consists of three doses that should be administered at weeks 0, 4 and 7, followed by a booster every six months.
Results
In this study we assayed a reduction in the number of the initial doses of Gavacplus, evaluated the time course and the level of bovine anti-Bm86 antibodies elicited, and analyzed the vaccine effect on ticks engorging on immunized cattle under production conditions. Following three different immunization schemes, the bovines developed a strong and specific immune response characterized by elevated anti-Bm86 IgG titers. A reduction in the weight of engorging female ticks, in the weight of the eggs laid and also in R. microplus viable eggs percentage was obtained by using only two doses of Gavacplus administered at weeks 0 and 4, followed by a booster six months later. This reduction did not differ from the results obtained on ticks engorging on cattle immunized at weeks 0, 4 and 7. It was also demonstrated that anti-Bm86 antibody titers over 1:640, measured in bovines immunized at weeks 0 and 4, were sufficient to affect weight and reproductive potential of female ticks as compared with ticks engorging on unvaccinated animals. In addition, no statistically significant differences were detected in the average weight of eggs laid by ticks engorged on immunized cattle that showed anti-Bm86 specific titers in the range of 1:640 to 1:81920.
Conclusion
The administration of two initial doses of Gavacplus containing 100 μg of Bm86 antigen to non-immunized cattle under production conditions is sufficient to affect the weight and the reproductive capacity of R. microplus engorging females. According to these results, cattle herds' manipulation and vaccine costs could be potentially reduced with a positive impact on the implementation of integrated control programs against R. microplus.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-43
PMCID: PMC2949828  PMID: 20846415
17.  Feasibility of a liver transcriptomics approach to assess bovine treatment with the prohormone dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) 
Background
Within the European Union the use of growth promoting agents in animal production is prohibited. Illegal use of natural prohormones like dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA) is hard to prove since prohormones are strongly metabolized in vivo. In the present study, we investigated the feasibility of a novel effect-based approach for monitoring abuse of DHEA. Changes in gene expression profiles were studied in livers of bull calves treated orally (PO) or intramuscularly (IM) with 1000 mg DHEA versus two control groups, using bovine 44K DNA microarrays. In contrast to controlled genomics studies, this work involved bovines purchased at the local market on three different occasions with ages ranging from 6 to 14 months, thereby reflecting the real life inter-animal variability due to differences in age, individual physiology, season and diet.
Results
As determined by principal component analysis (PCA), large differences in liver gene expression profiles were observed between treated and control animals as well as between the two control groups. When comparing the gene expression profiles of PO and IM treated animals to that of all control animals, the number of significantly regulated genes (p-value <0.05 and a fold change >1.5) was 23 and 37 respectively. For IM and PO treated calves, gene sets were generated of genes that were significantly regulated compared to one control group and validated versus the other control group using Gene Set Enrichment Analysis (GSEA). This cross validation, showed that 6 out of the 8 gene sets were significantly enriched in DHEA treated animals when compared to an 'independent' control group.
Conclusions
This study showed that identification and application of genomic biomarkers for screening of (pro)hormone abuse in livestock production is substantially hampered by biological variation. On the other hand, it is demonstrated that comparison of pre-defined gene sets versus the whole genome expression profile of an animal allows to distinguish DHEA treatment effects from variations in gene expression due to inherent biological variation. Therefore, DNA-microarray expression profiling together with statistical tools like GSEA represent a promising approach to screen for (pro)hormone abuse in livestock production. However, a better insight in the genomic variability of the control population is a prerequisite in order to define growth promoter specific gene sets that can be used as robust biomarkers in daily practice.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-44
PMCID: PMC2949829  PMID: 20846423
18.  Extramedullary hematopoiesis in a case of benign mixed mammary tumor in a female dog: cytological and histopathological assessment 
Backgroud
Extramedullary hematopoiesis (EMH) is defined as the presence of hematopoietic stem cells such as erythroid and myeloid lineage plus megakaryocytes in extramedullary sites like liver, spleen and lymph nodes and is usually associated with either bone marrow or hematological disorders. Mammary EMH is a rare condition either in human and veterinary medicine and can be associated with benign mixed mammary tumors, similarly to that described in this case.
Case presentation
Hematopoietic stem cells were found in a benign mixed mammary tumor of a 7-year-old female mongrel dog that presents a nodule in the left inguinal mammary gland. The patient did not have any hematological abnormalities. Cytological evaluation demonstrated two distinct cell populations, composed of either epithelial or mesenchymal cells, sometimes associated with a fibrillar acidophilic matrix, apart from megakaryocytes, osteoclasts, metarubricytes, prorubricytes, rubricytes, rubriblasts, promyelocytes, myeloblasts. Histological examination confirmed the presence of an active hematopoietic bone marrow within the bone tissue of a benign mammary mixed tumor.
Conclusions
EMH is a rare condition described in veterinary medicine that can be associated with mammary mixed tumors. It's detection can be associated with several neoplastic and non-neoplastic mammary lesions, i.e. osteosarcomas, mixed tumors and bone metaplasia.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-45
PMCID: PMC2954924  PMID: 20846427
19.  Factors associated with whole carcass condemnation rates in provincially-inspected abattoirs in Ontario 2001-2007: implications for food animal syndromic surveillance 
Background
Ontario provincial abattoirs have the potential to be important sources of syndromic surveillance data for emerging diseases of concern to animal health, public health and food safety. The objectives of this study were to: (1) describe provincially inspected abattoirs processing cattle in Ontario in terms of the number of abattoirs, the number of weeks abattoirs process cattle, geographical distribution, types of whole carcass condemnations reported, and the distance animals are shipped for slaughter; and (2) identify various seasonal, secular, disease and non-disease factors that might bias the results of quantitative methods, such as cluster detection methods, used for food animal syndromic surveillance.
Results
Data were collected from the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs and the Ontario Cattlemen's Association regarding whole carcass condemnation rates for cattle animal classes, abattoir compliance ratings, and the monthly sales-yard price for various cattle classes from 2001-2007. To analyze the association between condemnation rates and potential explanatory variables including abattoir characteristics, season, year and commodity price, as well as animal class, negative binomial regression models were fit using generalized estimating equations (GEE) to account for autocorrelation among observations from the same abattoir. Results of the fitted model found animal class, year, season, price, and audit rating are associated with condemnation rates in Ontario abattoirs. In addition, a subset of data was used to estimate the average distance cattle are shipped to Ontario provincial abattoirs. The median distance from the farm to the abattoir was approximately 82 km, and 75% of cattle were shipped less than 100 km.
Conclusions
The results suggest that secular and seasonal trends, as well as some non-disease factors will need to be corrected for when applying quantitative methods for syndromic surveillance involving these data. This study also demonstrated that animals shipped to Ontario provincial abattoirs come from relatively local farms, which is important when considering the use of spatial surveillance methods for these data.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-42
PMCID: PMC2933697  PMID: 20704738
20.  Effect of abrupt weaning at housing on leukocyte distribution, functional activity of neutrophils, and acute phase protein response of beef calves 
Background
Sixteen, spring-born, single suckled, castrated male calves of Limousin × Holstein-Friesian and Simmental × Holstein-Friesian dams respectively, were used to investigate the effect of weaning on total leukocyte and differential counts, neutrophil functional activity, lymphocyte immunophenotypes, and acute phase protein response. Calves grazed with their dams until the end of the grazing season when they were housed in a slatted floor shed. On the day of housing, calves were assigned to a treatment, (i) abruptly weaned (W: n = 8) or (ii) non-weaned (controls) (C: n = 8). Weaned calves were housed in pens without their dams, whereas non-weaned (control) calves were housed with their dams. Blood was collected on day -7, 0 (housing), 2, 7, and 14 to determine total leukocyte and differential counts and concentration of fibrinogen and haptoglobin. Lymphocyte immunophenotypes were characterised using selected surface antigens (CD4+, CD8+, WC1+ (γδ T cells), MHC Class II+ lymphocytes), and the functional activities of neutrophils (surface expression of L-selectin (CD62L), phagocytic and oxidative burst activity) were investigated using flow cytometry.
Results
Treatment × sampling time interactions (P < 0.05) were detected for total leukocyte and neutrophil counts, all lymphocyte subsets, mean fluorescence intensity of CD62L+ neutrophils, and percentage neutrophils performing phagocytosis. On d 2, total leukocyte and neutrophil count increased (P < 0.001), and percentage CD4+ and CD8+ lymphocytes, percentage phagocytic neutrophils, mean fluorescence intensity of CD62L+ neutrophils decreased (P < 0.05) in W compared with baseline (d 0), whereas they were unchanged (P > 0.05) in C. On d 2, percentage WC1+ lymphocytes decreased (P < 0.05), whereas percentage MHC class II+ lymphocytes increased (P < 0.05) in W and C, however the magnitude of change was greater in W than C. There were no treatment × sampling time interactions (P > 0.05) for monocyte, eosinophil, and basophil counts, percentage G1+ neutrophils, or percentage oxidative burst positive neutrophils.
Conclusions
Abrupt weaning resulted in increased neutrophil counts and impaired trafficking and phagocytic function. Together with the changes in lymphocyte subsets, the results suggest that there was a greater transitory reduction in immune function at housing in abruptly weaned than non-weaned beef calves.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-39
PMCID: PMC2917424  PMID: 20649947
21.  Effect of the feeding system on the fatty acid composition, expression of the Δ9-desaturase, Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor Alpha, Gamma, and Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Protein 1 genes in the semitendinous muscle of light lambs of the Rasa Aragonesa breed 
Background
Conjugated linoleic acids (CLAs) are receiving increasing attention because of their beneficial effects on human health, with milk and meat products derived from ruminants as important sources of CLA in the human diet. SCD gene is responsible for some of the variation in CLA concentration in adipose tissues, and PPARγ, PPARα and SREBP1 genes are regulator of SCD gene. The aim of this work was to evaluate the effect of the feeding system on fatty acid composition, CLA content and relative gene expression of Δ9-desaturase (SCD), Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor Gamma (PPARγ), Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptor Alpha, (PPARα) and Sterol Regulatory Element Binding Protein (SREBP1) in Rasa Aragonesa light lambs in semitendinous muscle. Forty-four single-born male lambs were used to evaluate the effect of the feeding system, varying on an intensity gradient according to the use of concentrates: 1. grazing alfalfa, 2. grazing alfalfa with a supplement for lambs, 3. indoor lambs with grazing ewes and 4. drylot.
Results
Both grazing systems resulted in a higher concentration of vaccenic acid (VA), CLA, CLA/VA acid ratio, and a lower oleic content, oleic acid (C18:1)/stearic acid (C18:0) ratio, PUFA n-6/n-3 ratio and SCD expression compared to other diets. In addition feeding system affected the fatty acid composition and SCD expression, possibly due to CLA concentration or the PUFA n-6/n-3 ratio. Both expression of the SCD gene and the feeding system were important factors affecting CLA concentration in the animal's semitendinous muscle. PPARγ, PPARα and SREBP1 expression seemed to be unaffected by the feeding system. Although no significant results were found, PPARγ, PPARα and SREBP1 showed similar expression pattern as SCD. Moreover, the correlation results between SCD expression and PPARγ (p < 0.01), as well as SREBP1 (p < 0.01) expression, may suggest that these genes were affecting SCD expression in a different way.
Conclusions
The data indicated that the feeding system is the main factor affecting the fatty acid composition and SCD gene expression, which is also affected by CLA and possibly by n-6/n-3 PUFAs.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-40
PMCID: PMC2917425  PMID: 20649987
22.  The effect of road and sea transport on inflammatory, adrenocortical, metabolic and behavioural responses of weanling heifers 
The objective was to investigate the effect of transport on inflammatory, adrenocortical, metabolic and behavioural responses of weanling heifers transported from Ireland to Spain.
Background
At the end of the grazing season, 60 Charolais × beef heifers (mean live weight 245, s.e. 4.3 kg and mean weaning age 219, s.e. 4.9 days) were abruptly weaned from their dams on day 0. The animals were assigned by live weight to two treatments, transport (T) (n = 40) (mean 246, s.e. 5.4 kg) and control (C) (n = 20) (mean 247, s.e. 7.2 kg) on day 0. The T animals were transported from Ireland to France on a roll-on roll-off ferry at a stocking density of 0.93 m2/animal and then by road for 9 h to a French lairage while C animals remained in Ireland and were not transported. On arrival at the French lairage (d 2), 20 T animals were unloaded (ULT) and rested for 12 h in the French lairage and 20 animals rested (RT) on the transporter. All animals had access to hay and water. After the rest period, the ULT animals were re-loaded. The subsequent journey by road from France to Spain was 9 h travel, 7 h rest (on the transporter) and a further 7 h travel by road. All T animals were blood sampled prior to transport (day (d) 0; baseline), on arrival in the French lairage (d 2), after 12 h rest in the French lairage (d 2), on arrival at the feedlot in Spain (d 4) and on d 6, d 8, d 10 and d 34. Control animals were blood sampled at the same times as T animals.
Results
ULT and RT animals had lower (P < 0.05) live weight than C animals on d 6. WBC number was lower (P < 0.05) in control animals on d 10 and greater on d 34 compared with baseline values. RT and ULT animals had greater (P < 0.05) WBC number than baseline on d 2 (arrival in France) to d 34. Neutrophil % was unchanged in RT, ULT and control animals compared with baseline. Control, RT and ULT animals had lower haematocrit % (P < 0.05) throughout the study compared with d 0. There was no difference (P > 0.05) in plasma protein concentration between RT and ULT animals from day 2 to d 34. Plasma concentrations of urea were higher (P < 0.05) in RT animals from d 2 to d 34 compared with C animals. RT and ULT animals had lower (P < 0.05) non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA) and βeta-hydroxy-butyrate (ßHB) concentrations on d 10 and d 34 compared with d 0.
Conclusion
It is concluded that, within the conditions of the present study, the performance of the animals that remained on the transporter during the 12 h lairage period in France was not different post-transport from the transported animals that were unloaded and lairaged in France.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-36
PMCID: PMC2917422  PMID: 20646267
23.  Characterisation of physiological and immunological responses in beef cows to abrupt weaning and subsequent housing 
Background
Weaning involves the permanent separation of the calf from the dam and has been shown to be stressful for both. The objectives of this study were to characterise the effect of i) abrupt weaning and ii) subsequent housing on the extended physiological and immunological responses of beef cows. At weaning (day (d) 0, mean age of calf (s.d.) 212 (24.5) d), cows were abruptly separated from their calves and returned to the grazing area. After 35 d at pasture, cows were housed in a slatted floor shed and offered grass silage ad libitum plus a mineral-vitamin supplement daily. Rectal body temperature was recorded and blood samples were obtained on i) d 0 (weaning), 2, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35 and subsequently on ii) d 0 (housing), 2, 7, 14 and 21 for physiological, haematological and immunological measurements.
Results
Post-weaning, concentration of cortisol and dehydroepiandrosterone were unchanged (P > 0.05). Rectal body temperature, neutrophil number and neutrophil: lymphocyte ratio increased (P < 0.01) on d 2 compared with pre-weaning baseline. Lymphocyte and neutrophil number decreased (P < 0.05) on d 2 to 7 and d 7 to 21, respectively, compared with pre-weaning baseline. Interferon-γ production decreased (P < 0.05) on d 2 compared with pre-weaning baseline. An increase (P < 0.05) in acute phase proteins, fibrinogen and haptoglobin was evident on d 2 to 35 compared with pre-weaning baseline. Concentration of glucose increased on d 2 to 28, whereas non-esterified fatty acid decreased on d 2 to 35 compared with pre-weaning baseline. Post-housing, concentrations of cortisol, rectal body temperature, total leukocyte number, and glucose were unchanged (P > 0.05). On d 2 post-housing, neutrophil number and neutrophil: lymphocyte ratio increased (P < 0.05), whereas lymphocyte number and concentrations of dehydroepiandrosterone, fibrinogen and non-esterified fatty acid decreased (P < 0.05) compared with pre-housing baseline. Concentration of haptoglobin increased (P < 0.05) on d 14 to 21 post-housing.
Conclusions
A transitory increase in neutrophil number and decrease in lymphocyte number, increased neutrophil:lymphocyte ratio coupled with decreased interferon-γ production, and increased concentration of acute phase proteins indicate a stress response in cows post-weaning, whereas post-housing, changes were less marked.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-37
PMCID: PMC2917423  PMID: 20646268
24.  Effect of road transport for up to 24 hours followed by twenty-four hour recovery on live weight and physiological responses of bulls 
Background
The transport of livestock can have major implications for their welfare, and there is strong public interest and scientific endeavour aimed at ensuring that the welfare of transported animals is optimal. The objective of the study was to investigate the effect of transport on live weight, physiological and haematological responses of bulls after road transport of 0, 6, 9, 12, 18 and 24 hours (h). Seventy-two Charolais bulls (mean weight (s.d.) 367 (35) kg), naïve to transport, were randomly assigned to one of six journey (J) times of 0 h, 6 h, 9 h, 12 h, 18 h and 24 h transport (n = 12 animals/treatment) at a stocking density of 1.02 m2/bull. Blood samples were collected by jugular venipuncture before transport (-0.25 h), immediately after (0 h) and at 1 h, 2 h, 4 h, 6 h, 8 h, 12 h and 24 h relative to time 0 h. The bulls were weighed before transport (- 24 h and - 0.25 h), immediately after (0 h), and at 4 h, 12 h and 24 h relative to time 0 h. Control animals were blood sampled before assignment (-0.25 h) to novel pens, after (24 h), and at 1 h, 2 h, 4 h, 6 h, 8 h, 12 h and 24 h relative to the 24 h sampling time point.
Results
Bulls travelling for 6 h (280 km), 9 h (435 km), 12 h (582 km), 18 h (902 km) and 24 h (1192 km) lost 4.7, 4.5, 5.7 (P < 0.05), 6.6 (P < 0.05) and 7.5 (P < 0.05) percentage (%) live weight compared with baseline. Live weight re-gained to pre-transport levels during the 24 h recovery period. Lymphocyte percentages were lower (P < 0.05) and neutrophil percentages were greater (P < 0.05) in all animals. Blood protein, glucose and NEFA concentrations and creatine kinase activity were greater (P < 0.05) in the bulls following transport and returned to baseline within 24 h.
Conclusions
Under the conditions of the present study, transport of bulls on journeys by road, ranging from 6 h (280 km) to 24 h (1192 km) duration, affected live weight, haematological and physiological measurements of metabolism and inflammation. Our findings showed that live weight and some physiological and haematological responses of bulls returned to pre-transport levels within 24 h with animals having had access to feed and water.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-38
PMCID: PMC2918586  PMID: 20646269
25.  Vaccination with attenuated Salmonella enterica Dublin expressing E coli O157:H7 outer membrane protein Intimin induces transient reduction of fecal shedding of E coli O157:H7 in cattle 
Background
Escherichia coli serogroup O157:H7 has emerged as an important zoonotic bacterial pathogen, causing a range of symptoms from self-limiting bloody diarrhea to severe hemorrhagic colitis and hemolytic-uremic syndrome in humans. Beef and dairy cattle are considered the most important animal reservoirs for this pathogen. One of the important virulence characteristics of E. coli O157:H7 is the eaeA gene encoding the 97 kDa surface protein intimin. Intimin is required for attachment and effacement during the interaction of enterohemorrhagic E. coli with human and bovine neonatal enterocytes. The present study was undertaken to test the hypothesis that an adaptive mucosal immune response directed against intimin will reduce or prevent enteric colonization and fecal shedding of E. coli O157:H7 in cattle.
Results
Cattle were orally inoculated with either milk (control), milk with live attenuated Salmonella enterica serovar Dublin (vector), or milk with live attenuated recombinant S. Dublin expressing intimin (vaccinated) on days 0, 14 and 28. On day 98, all calves were challenged orally with E. coli O157:H7 to evaluate whether vaccination with the recombinant S. Dublin expressing intimin would reduce the level of E. coli O157:H7 fecal shedding.
During the first 28 days, vaccinated calves shed both the vector strain and the intimin-expressing S. Dublin strain at a similar level. The vector strain was shed for a significantly longer period as compared to the level of recombinant vaccine strain. Calves that received the intimin-expressed vaccine ceased shedding S. Dublin from day 28 to day 63. All calves were challenged with E. coli O157:H7 on day 98 to determine the effect on fecal shedding of E. coli O157:H7. The amount of E. coli O157:H7 in feces was measured for 30 days post-challenge. We observed a transient clearance of E. coli O157:H7 from the feces in the vaccinated calves. The magnitude of fecal E. coli O157:H7 shedding did not correlate with the presence of intimin-specific fecal IgA.
Conclusion
Oral vaccination with live attenuated recombinant S. Dublin expressing intimin reduced enteric colonization and fecal shedding of E. coli O157:H7. However, the transient clearance of E. coli O157:H7 was not associated with an enhanced IgA-mediated mucosal immune response.
doi:10.1186/1746-6148-6-35
PMCID: PMC2912257  PMID: 20609252

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