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Field trial of a quadrivalent vaccine against calf respiratory disease
  1. EJ Stott,
  2. LH Thomas,
  3. CJ Howard and
  4. RN Gourlay
  1. Agricultural and Food Research Council Institute for Animal Disease Research, Compton Laboratory, Berkshire.


A quadrivalent vaccine containing the killed antigens of respiratory syncytial virus, parainfluenza virus type 3, Mycoplasma dispar and M bovis, emulsified with an oil adjuvant, was tested for efficacy against naturally occurring calf respiratory disease. Three batches of beef cattle aged 12, seven and three weeks at the time of first vaccination were used. Within each batch of approximately 100 animals, half were vaccinated subcutaneously on three occasions, three weeks apart and half served as unvaccinated controls. Over the trial period, from November 1981 to May 1982, 27 per cent of the control calves were treated for respiratory disease compared with 16.3 per cent of the vaccinated animals. This reduction of non-fatal disease in the vaccinated animals represented a protection rate of almost 40 per cent and was statistically significant (P less than 0.05). Mortality was also reduced from 3.4 per cent in the control calves to 1.9 per cent in the vaccinated animals but this difference was not statistically significant. During a major outbreak of disease associated with respiratory syncytial virus, the protection rate increased to 69 per cent (P less than 0.01). Furthermore, in the batch of cattle aged seven weeks at first vaccination there was significantly less pneumonic consolidation at death in the vaccinated animals than in the control animals (P less than 0.05).

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