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Mycoplasma species isolated from intramammary infection of Japanese dairy cows
  1. H. Higuchi, DVM, PhD1,
  2. S. Gondaira, DVM1,
  3. H. Iwano, DVM, PhD2,
  4. K. Hirose, DVM, PhD3,
  5. K. Nakajima, PhD4,
  6. K. Kawai, DVM, PhD5,
  7. K. Hagiwara, DVM, PhD6,
  8. Y. Tamura, DVM, PhD7 and
  9. H. Nagahata, DVM, PhD1
  1. 1Animal Health Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, Rakuno Gakuen University, Animal Health Lab, Bunkyodai Midori 582, Ebetsu, Hokkaido 069-8501, Japan
  2. 2Department of Veterinary Biochemistry, School of Veterinary Medicine, Ebetsu, Hokkaido 069-8501, Japan
  3. 3Meiji Seika Pharma Co., Ltd., Tokyo Japan
  4. 4National Agricultural Research Center for Hokkaido Region, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization, Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan
  5. 5Department of Animal Health 1, School of Veterinary Medicine, Azabu University, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-5201, Japan
  6. 6Department of Veterinary Virology, School of Veterinary Medicine, Rakuno Gakuen University, 582 Bunkyodai, Ebetsu, Hokkaido 0698501, Japan
  7. 7Department of Food Microbiology and Food Safety, School of Veterinary Medicine, Rakuno Gakuen University, Hokkaido, Ebetsu, Japan;
  1. Email for correspondence: higuchi{at}

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Mycoplasma species are highly contagious pathogens, and intramammary Mycoplasma infection is a serious issue for the dairy industry (Nicholas and Ayling 2003). Clinical Mycoplasma mastitis presents with clinical signs including fever, swelling and udder induration (Bushnell 1984). Milk from an infected quarter usually appears abnormal, with flaky sediments in watery or serous fluid. Because the cure rate of clinical Mycoplasma mastitis is very low due to a poor response to antimicrobial treatment, cows infected with Mycoplasma species must be culled to prevent outbreaks of Mycoplasma mastitis in dairy herds (Jasper 1982, Kirk and Lauerman 1994, Nicholas and Ayling 2003). We previously reported a 1.29 per cent prevalence of Mycoplasma species in bulk tank milk from 1241 Japanese dairy farms (Higuchi and others 2011a, b). However, little is known about the relationship between Mycoplasma species and somatic cell count (SCC) in milk. Here, we identified the Mycoplasma species isolated from quarter milk samples and their relationship with SCC, and clinical signs of the udder.

A total of 1310 commercial dairy farms in Hokkaido, Kyushu and Honshu (main island) in Japan were randomly selected for bulk tank milk screening. Each bulk tank contained two days of milk …

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