The development of the antibody response to peptides of the transmembrane glycoprotein of bovine immunodeficiency virus (BIV) was followed over a period of 50 weeks in six cattle experimentally infected with the BIV(FL112) isolate. Antibody was detected by an enzyme immunoassay using either a linear or a cyclized peptide with structural features common to an immunodominant region of other lentiviruses. The assay was specific for BIV, detecting antibody in bovine sera to BIV(FL112) or BIV(R29) but not to six other common viruses of cattle. Antibody was present in the sera of all cattle inoculated with BIV(FL112) within 4 weeks of infection, peaked between 10 and 30 weeks and persisted in most cattle during the 50 weeks of observation. These features indicate that this assay may be useful in identifying cattle infected with other strains of BIV in the field.


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