1887

Abstract

A recent hypothesis to explain the recurrence of bluetongue disease after winter seasonal absences of the vector has suggested a role for persistent infection of sheep. This report presents combined independent work from two laboratories investigating the possible recovery of (BTV) over a protracted period after infection of both sheep and cattle. Prior to infection with either cell-culture-adapted or non-culture-adapted BTV, sheep were subjected to a preliminary exposure to sp. insects, which reportedly facilitates recovery of virus from infected sheep several months post-infection (p.i.). A series of skin biopsies at different intervals p.i. was used to establish skin fibroblast (SF) cultures from which attempts were made to detect virus by isolation and by molecular and immunological methods. Also examined was the effect on virus recovery of additional exposure to sp. prior to skin biopsy during the post-inoculation period. A herd of cattle sentinels for surveillance of natural BTV infection in northern Australia was monitored prospectively for seroconversion. Evidence of infection initiated attempted virus recovery by establishing SF cultures. It was found that in both cattle and sheep there was not a protracted period over which BTV could be recovered from SF cultures. The data do not support a general hypothesis that BTV persists in either sheep or cattle.

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2006-12-01
2019-11-15
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