The use of the fluorescent dye acridine orange for making differential cell counts in mammary secretions from sows was investigated, and the variations in cell type during the lactation period were also studied. In untreated samples of mammary secretions polymorphonuclear leucocytes, mononuclear phagocytes, lymphocytes and epithelial cells could be identified with certainty, and the methodological error was small (1.80 to 2.22 per cent). The mammary secretions could be stored at 4 degrees C for six hours without any effect on the differential count. Washing the secretions decreased the percentage of polymorphonuclear leucocytes and increased the percentage of epithelial cells. The polymorphonuclear leucocytes predominated in colostrum (58.0 to 65.5 per cent) and epithelial cells predominated in milk (60 to 89 per cent). Polymorphonuclear leucocytes were the predominant phagocytes in all mammary secretions (7.6 to 65.5 per cent).
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