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Field application of an indirect gE ELISA on pooled milk samples for the control of IBR in free and marker vaccinated dairy herds

Colitti, Barbara, Muratore, Elvira, Careddu, Maria Elena, Bertolotti, Luigi, Iotti, Bryan, Giacobini, Mario, Profiti, Margherita, Nogarol, Chiara, Böttcher, Jens, Ponzo, Andreino, Facelli, Roberto, Rosati, Sergio
BMC veterinary research 2018 v.14 no.1 pp. 387
Bovine herpesvirus 1, animals, blood serum, bulk milk, cost effectiveness, dairy herds, diagnostic techniques, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, glycoproteins, immunoglobulin G, infectious bovine rhinotracheitis, lactating females, lactation, milk, monitoring, piedmont, vaccines, veterinary medicine, Italy
BACKGROUND: The aim of the present study was to assess the reliability of a new strategy for monitoring the serological response against Bovine Herpesvirus 1 (BoHV1), the causative agent of infectious bovine rhinotracheitis (IBR). Bulk milk samples have already been identified as cost effective diagnostic matrices for monitoring purposes. Nevertheless, most eradication programs are still based on individual standard assays. In a region of northwestern Italy (Piedmont), the voluntary eradication program for IBR has become economically unsustainable. Being the prevalence of infection still high, glycoprotein E-deleted marker vaccines are commonly used but gE blocking ELISAs are less sensitive on bulk milk samples compared to blood serum. RESULTS: A recently developed indirect gE ELISA showed high versatility when applied to a wide range of matrices. In this study, we applied a faster, cost effective system for the concentration of IgG from pooled milk samples. The IgG enriched fractions were tested using a gE indirect ELISA for monitoring purposes in IBR-positive and IBR-marker-vaccinated herds. Official diagnostic tests were used as gold standard. During a 3 years study, a total 250 herds were involved, including more than 34,500 lactating cows. The proposed method showed a very good agreement with official diagnostic protocols and very good diagnostic performances: only 37 positive animals were not detected across the entire study. CONCLUSIONS: The results highlighted the ability of the proposed method to support the surveillance of IBR in the Piedmont region, reducing the costs without affecting the diagnostic performances.