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Res Vet Sci. 2000 Oct;69(2):181-4.

Systemic and local immune response of cows to intramammary infection with Staphylococcus aureus.

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National Mastitis Reference Center, Kimron Veterinary Institute, Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development, P.O. Box 12, Bet Dagan 50250, Israel.


The association between Staphylococcus aureus chronic mammary gland infection and the resulting immune response expressed by the production of specific IgG and IgA antibodies in blood and milk was studied in Israeli Holstein cows. Specific antibodies of the IgG class were detected in sera of 82.6 per cent of the cows chronically infected by S aureus, while in 17.4 per cent no such antibodies could be detected. Specific IgG antibodies to S aureus were neither detected in sera of cows free of mammary infection nor in those infected with different coagulase-negative staphylococci (CNS) such as S intermedius, S chromogenes or S haemolyticus. In milk, specific IgG antibodies to S aureus were detected only in cows with positive serology. The end point dilutions in the milk were 5 to 30 per cent of that of blood from the same cow. No significant difference in IgG titres was found in the same cow if the quarter was infected with S aureus or not. Specific antibodies to S aureus of the IgA class could not be detected in the sera of any of the cows included in this study. In milk, a specific IgA antibody was detected only in the samples from the S aureus infected quarters in which S aureus was isolated at the time of the experiment. In the same cow, quarters infected by S aureus were found to have a significantly higher IgA titre (P < 0.0001) than that of the non-infected ones.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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