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Effect of colostral antibody-induced immunity on bluetongue virus vaccine efficacy in calves

D. Vitour, J. Guillotin, C. Sailleau, C. Viarouge, A. Desprat, F. Wolff and others

THE efficacy of commercial vaccines against bluetongue virus (BTV) has been demonstrated; however, relatively little is known about the effect of maternal immunity on vaccine efficacy. This study investigated colostral antibody-induced immunity to BTV and its effect on the humoral response following vaccination in calves.

Twenty-two pairs of pregnant cows and their subsequent calves from two farms in France were included in the study. All cows were vaccinated with an inactivated BTV-8 vaccine (Bovilis BTV8; Intervet) in May 2008; all cows were shown to be seropositive immediately before calving. Calves were born in October 2008. Blood samples were collected from the calves when they were aged approximately 48, 80, 111, 139 and 202 days. Thirteen of 22 calves were vaccinated against BTV-8 at a mean age of 118 days. Samples were tested for the presence of BTV antibodies by serum neutralisation test (SNT) and competitive ELISA (cELISA).

All 22 colostrum-fed calves were seropositive for BTV at the first sampling time. The median age at which calves became seronegative …

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