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J Vet Diagn Invest. 2004 Mar;16(2):132-8.

Comparison of reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction, virus isolation, and immunoperoxidase assays for detecting pigs infected with low, moderate, and high virulent strains of classical swine fever virus.

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Canadian Food Inspection Agency, National Centre for Foreign Animal Disease, 1015 Arlington Street, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3E 3M4.


Pigs were experimentally inoculated with Glentorf, Lelystad/97, and Alfort/187: representative low, moderate, and high virulent strains of classical swine fever virus (CSFV). Animals were tested for viremia using virus isolation and reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) assays run under routine diagnostic conditions. The virus was detected in the peripheral blood by virus isolation and RT-PCR assays of all Glentorf- and Lelystad/97-infected pigs beginning at 3 days postinoculation (dpi) and in all Alfort/187-infected pigs beginning at 2 dpi. Viremia, as determined by virus isolation, remained detectable in Lelystad/97- and Alfort/187-infected pigs until the last animal within each cohort was euthanized on days 12 and 7 postinoculation, respectively. In contrast, the virus could be isolated from the blood of all Glentorf-infected pigs between 3 and 7 dpi but not from 10 to 21 dpi when the experiment was concluded. Viremia, as determined by RT-PCR, became apparent in Alfort/187-infected pigs at 2 dpi and in Glentorf- and Lelystad/97-infected pigs at 3 dpi. All pigs, regardless of the CSFV strain used, remained RT-PCR positive until they were euthanized. Tonsils were harvested from all the pigs and frozen sections tested for the presence of the CSFV antigen using polyclonal pestivirus and monoclonal CSFV horseradish peroxidase (HRPO) conjugates. Immunostaining reactions were positive for all the Alfort/187- and Lelystad/97-infected pigs. By contrast, tonsils from the Glentorf-infected pigs gave negative to equivocal results. These data suggest that an RT-PCR assay performed on blood may be the best test when dealing with pigs infected with low virulent strains of CSFV.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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