Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus: Diagnosis, Management,and Control

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Persistently infected animals can be identified at birth as being antigen-positive but seronegative.

However, colostral transfer of maternal immunity or infection with a heterologous strain of BVDV can make these animals seropostitive, so care must be taken when timing and interpreting tests. Persistently infected animals continuously shed large amounts of virus throughout their lives, providing a major source of infection for naive cattle [24]. Persistently infected dams produce persistently infected calves, resulting in family lines capable of maintaining the virus in a herd [36].

Animals may be undersized and slow-growing, and are predisposed to other diseases. Mucosal disease is an invariably fatal condition of month-old cattle [45].

Disease follows a course of several days to weeks and intially presents as pyrexia, depression and weakness. Anorexia leads to emaciation, and animals suffer watery, foul-smelling and sometimes bloody diarrhoea.

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Dehydration ensues. As suggested by the name, lesions are localised to mucosal surfaces. These include the oral mucosa, tongue, external nares, nasal cavities and conjunctiva [31] , where large lesions cause excessive salivation, lacrimation, and oculo-nasal discharge. The coronet and interdigital surface are also affected, causing the animal to become disinclined to walk and eventually recumbent. Mucosal disease arises from superinfection of persistently infected animals with a cytopathic virus antigenically similar to the original, non-cytopathic strain persisting in the animal.

In one animal, a cytopathic virus is produced by mutation of the persistent non-cytopathic virus. The new cytopathic isolate can then be transmitted to other animals where it will cause mucosal disease if they are persistently infected with the same non-cytopathic strain. Immune tolerance induced by the persistent virus prevents the immune system recognising the superinfecting cytopathic strain: the two biotypes are said to be "homologous" to the immunotolerance. There are several techniques available for the laboratory diagnosis of BVD.

These can detect antibody to BVDV or parts of the virus itself. The serum neutralisation test depends on the ability of antibodies in the serum to neutralise BVD virus and thereby prevent infection of cell culture. The test takes four to seven days and requires cell culture facilities and an experienced observer.

Because antibody against BVDV is prevalent in most cattle populations, a single serologic test is not usually sufficient for diagnosis of a recent infection. Therefore, an increase in antibody titre between paired serum samples must be more than four-fold to confirm recent infection [40]. Viral antigen or RNA can be detected using clinical specimens or tissue samples.

Bovine viral diarrhoea virus can be isolated from blood, nasal swabs or tissues to confirm active infection, and demonstration of virus in samples obtained at least three weeks apart is suggestive of persistent infection. The best tissues for virus isolation are skin, spleen, lymph node and segments of the gastrointestinal tract showing ulcerative lesions. Two samples taken weeks apart will confirm a persistent infection. Immunohistochemistry will demonstrate the presence of antigen in fixed or frozen sections.

Viral RNA may also be detected, using PCR for clinical specimens or in situ hybridisation on fresh or fixed tissues [40]. In cases of mild, acute BVD, lesions are rarely seen. When disease is more severe, the lymph nodes may appear swollen, there may be erosions and ulcerations of the gastrointestinal tract tract and serosal surfaces of the viscera may show petechial and ecchymotic hemorrhages [40].


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The pathology associated with mucosal disease is much more striking [31]. Oral, lingual and buccal erosions are observed, and buccal lesions often coalesce to form larger areas of necrosis and sloughed epithelium. Oesophageal lesions present similarly. The gastrointestinal tract often shows characteristic pathology, but post-mortem examination must be performed soon after death so that these are not masked by autolytic changes. In the rumen, ulceration is less common but, with congestion and oedema, may be seen along the pillars, and papillae can be reduced in size.

Several discoid erosions of around 5mm in diameter appear in the abomasum, with hyperaemia of the surrounding mucosa and petechiation of the submucosa, particularly at the pylorus.


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Abomasal erosions occasionally enlarge and ulcerate. Oval erosions can be seen along the antimesenteric surface of the small intestine, overlying the lymphatic tissue of the Peyer's patches and measuring centimetres in length. The erosions become larger and more numerous towards the terminal ileum, and the exposed surfaces varies in appearance.

In more chronic lesions, food is seen to adhere to the underlying submucosa, and in acute disease the exposed surface is acutely congested and often haemorrhages into the gut lumen.

Cattle Diseases

In the large intestine, the mucosal folds may be thickened, giving the organ a striped appearance inwardly. Petechiation and erosions are occasionally seen along the folds, and the large intestinal contents are watery, dark and foul-smelling. Acute BVDV infection is usually mild and does not require treatment, and treatment of more severe cases is symptomatic and supportive. There is no known treatment for mucosal disease and cases are euthanased on welfare grounds; recovery is most unlikely. Control of BVD is practiced to a greater extent than treatment.

Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus Type 1 and Type 2 (BVD) | Zoetis US

The aim is eradication on individual farms but some countries, for example in Scandinavia, have achieved national eradication. There are several elements to control, including effective biosecurity, strategic testing, elimination of persistently infected animals, and vaccination strategies [40]. Biosecurity measures can include the usual hygiene precautions taken on farms, by visitors and during veterinary attention, as well as scrutiny of bought-in livestock and biologicals. Replacement cattle should be tested for persistent infection and quarantined on-farm in case of acute infections before entering the herd.

If the resident herd is BVD-vaccinated, new animals should be brought up to date before joining the cohort. Embryo donors should be tested for persistent infection before transfer occurs, and purchase of in-calf heifers should be avoided as their offspring may be persistently infected. BVDV is shed in semen, so breeding bulls and semen for artificial insemination should be tested before coming into contact with cows. A report published by Gao et al.

The possible reasons of BVDV prevalence varies among same plateau could be that the herd size and breeding managements were changing with time. The BVDV infection rate in to was Actor of year was demonstrated to be risk factor influencing the prevalence significantly. In different years, yaks in In other studies, Gao et al. These observations indicate that number of yaks infecting BVDV were rapid increasing and widespread in Sichuan. Table I. Year a. In conclusion, a high prevalent Infections with BVDV in yak populations may have a negative impact on health and welfare, also may transmit this varus to other wild animals on the high plateau.

Therefore, BVDV control programs should also be considered planning. Abutarbush , S. Albayrak , H. Ames , T. In: Bovine viral diarrhea virus: diagnosis, management, and control eds. Goyal and J. Baker , J.

Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus: Diagnosis, Management,and Control

Casaubon , J. BMC Vet. Gao , J. Lawson, B. Chapman and G. Lillehaug, A. Antibodies to ruminant alpha-herpesviruses and pestiviruses in Norwegian cervids. Mackie, R. Google Scholar. Montrose, A. Novel single gold nanowire-based electrochemical immunosensor for rapid detection of bovine viral diarrhoea antibodies in serum. Morton, J. Experimental infection of reindeer with Bovine viral diarrhea virus.

Rangifer 10, 75— Nelson, D. Evidence for persistent Bovine viral diarrhea virus infection in a captive mountain goat Oreamnos americanus. Nielsen, S. Bovine virus diarrhea virus in free-living deer from Denmark.

Cattle Diseases

Passler, T. Transmission of Bovine viral diarrhea virus among white-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus. Cohabitation of pregnant white-tailed deer and cattle persistently infected with Bovine viral diarrhea virus results in persistently infected fawns. Bovine viral diarrhea virus infections in heterologous species. Health Res. Experimental persistent infection with Bovine viral diarrhea virus in white-tailed deer. Evaluation of hunter-harvested white-tailed deer for evidence of Bovine viral diarrhea virus infection in Alabama.

Pogranichniy, R.

Prevalence and characterization of Bovine viral diarrhea virus in the white-tailed deer population in Indiana. Raizman, E. Experimental infection of white-tailed deer fawns Odocoileus virginianus with Bovine viral diarrhea virus type-1 isolated from free-ranging white-tailed deer.

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