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Vet Microbiol. 2012 May 25;157(1-2):125-31. doi: 10.1016/j.vetmic.2011.11.034. Epub 2011 Dec 2.

Association between virulence factors of Escherichia coli, Fusobacterium necrophorum, and Arcanobacterium pyogenes and uterine diseases of dairy cows.

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Department of Clinical Sciences College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA.


The objective of this study was to evaluate the relationship between bacterial species-specific virulence factors (VFs) present in the uterus at 3 different stages of lactation (1-3, 8-10, and 34-36 days in milk (DIM)) and the incidence of metritis and clinical endometritis in dairy cows. The following VF genes were investigated: plo (pyolysin), cbpA (collagen-binding protein), and fimA (fimbriae expression) which are Arcanobacterium pyogenes specific; fimH (a type 1 pilus component), Escherichia coli specific; and lktA (leukotoxin), Fusobacterium necrophorum specific. Uterine swabs were collected from 111 postpartum dairy cows. PCR was used to detect the presence of plo, cbpA, fimA, fimH, and lktA genes. A. pyogenes cbpA was detected in only 5 samples and therefore was not subjected to further analysis. E. coli (fimH) was significantly associated with metritis and endometritis when detected at 1-3 DIM; F. necrophorum (lktA) was significantly associated with metritis when detected at 1-3 and 8-12 DIM and with endometritis when detected at 34-36 DIM; and A. pyogenes (fimA and plo) was associated with metritis (fimA) when detected at 1-3 DIM and endometritis (fimA and plo) when detected at 8-10 and 34-36 DIM.

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