Pure cultures of an isolate of Campylobacter coli obtained from small intestinal lesions in a seven-day-old piglet were used to inoculate hysterectomy derived, colostrum deprived piglets, conventional sucking piglets and conventional weaned pigs in three separate controlled experiments. Rectal temperatures rose to 40 degrees C in inoculated hysterectomy derived, colostrum deprived pigs within four days of infection and a mucoid yellowish diarrhoea containing occasional flecks of blood developed. C coli was isolated only from the faeces of the infected pigs and from all levels of their intestines at post mortem examination 12 days after inoculation. The small intestine was flaccid, pale and thickened in all cases, the contents were mucoid, the mucosa was hyperaemic and the mesenteric lymph nodes were enlarged. Mild villous atrophy and inflammatory changes were seen in the small intestines of the inoculated pigs. Mild colitis was present in both inoculated animals and controls. Agglutinating antibody to the inocular strain of C coli was present only in sera from the inoculated pigs at titres of up to 1:640. Similar changes were seen in conventional sucking piglets but in the weaned pigs no definite clinical signs were observed although the pathological changes were present. Both C coli and other enteric pathogens were present in the herd of origin of the conventional pigs.
- British Veterinary Association. All rights reserved.
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