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Vet J. 2010 Dec;186(3):374-8. doi: 10.1016/j.tvjl.2009.09.013. Epub 2009 Oct 17.

Protection in the absence of exclusion between two Brazilian isolates of Anaplasma marginale in experimentally infected calves.

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  • 1Departamento de Parasitologia, ICB-UFMG, C.P. 486, Belo Horizonte 31270-901, Brazil.


This study investigated whether a low pathogenicity isolate of Anaplasma marginale with an appendage (UFMG1) could protect calves from infection with a pathogenic A. marginale isolate (UFMG2). Two groups of five Friesian calves were each inoculated with UFMG1 by intravenous injections of either A. marginale-infected tick cell cultures (group 1) or blood stabilates (group 2); a third (control) group was injected with saline. All animals were inoculated with a blood stabilate containing a high pathogenicity A. marginale isolate (UFMG2) 75 days after the UFMG1 inoculation. After infection with UFMG2, animals in groups 1 and 2 presented low rickettsaemia, but no clinical signs and no reduction in packed cell volume (PCV). Control animals became sick, with high rickettsaemia (16% infected erythrocytes) and a reduction in PCV (71%), resulting in 60% deaths. Up to 2 weeks after the UFMG2 inoculation, msp1α UFMG1 sequences were detected in groups 1 and 2. Four weeks after UFMG2 inoculation, UFMG2 sequences were detected in these animals, along with a new msp1α genotype sequence, closely related to that of the UFMG2 isolate. Control animals had UFMG2 msp1α sequences up to 4weeks after inoculation with UFMG2 and the new msp1α genotype sequence could be detected on the sixth week. The origin of the new A. marginale genotype was unknown, but may represent the first example of MSP1a antigenic variation in infected cattle. The results confirmed the low pathogenicity of the UFMG1 isolate, which provided clinical protection against the highly pathogenic A. marginale UFMG2. Infection with UFMG1 did not prevent the establishment of a second isolate, suggesting protection without infection-exclusion among A. marginale isolates.

Published by Elsevier Ltd.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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