Latex beads were sensitised with a polysaccharide isolated from a F38 culture supernatant and used in a slide agglutination test to detect serum antibodies in goats with contagious caprine pleuropneumonia. The latex agglutination test detected antibodies in the sera of goats by 22 +/- 2 (mean +/- 1 sd) days after contact exposure to contagious caprine pleuropneumonia, whereas the complement-fixation test detected antibodies by 24 +/- 4 days after contact exposure. Both tests were negative with 181 sera from a farm which was free of the disease. When the same tests were done on 763 sera from two different farms with outbreaks of classical contagious caprine pleuropneumonia, 63 per cent were positive by the latex agglutination test and 23 per cent were positive by the complement-fixation test. Besides being more sensitive than complement fixation, the latex agglutination test can be performed in the field using undiluted serum or whole blood and a result obtained within two minutes.
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