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Am J Vet Res. 1985 Jul;46(7):1422-6.

Antibody response to genus- and serovar-specific leptospiral antigens in Leptospira-infected cows.


In cows inoculated with Leptospira interrogans serovar pomona or hardjo, the 2-mercaptoethanol-sensitive microscopic agglutination test (MAT) antibody to the serovar appeared 3 to 8 days after inoculation and peaked at 10 to 20 days, whereas the 2-mercaptoethanol-resistant MAT antibody was predominant at 35 to 80 days. A persistent antibody response, probably associated with serovar-specific leptospiral antigens, was detected in the cows inoculated with serovar pomona, using a sonicated or an alkaline-extracted antigen derived from serovar pomona in the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). In contrast, a short-lived antibody response to the same antigens was demonstrated in cows inoculated with serovar hardjo, probably more typical of the response to genus-specific leptospiral antigens. Antigens derived from L biflexa serovar patoc only detected the latter type of antibody response in cows inoculated with serovar pomona or hardjo. Correlative studies revealed that the antigens derived from serovar patoc seem to be genus specific and serologically closely related, but not identical. The antigens derived from serovar pomona were genus specific on the basis of the early antibody response to leptospiral inoculation in the cows, but serovar specific based on the subsequent more persistent response to leptospiral inoculation. These antigens were also serologically closely related, but not identical. Examination of sera from cows that aborted and were MAT-positive for serovar pomona or hardjo revealed a more serovar-specific antibody response, indicating that there may have been a less recent leptospiral antigenic stimulus, thus emphasizing the caution with which results of the ELISA and other serologic assays for the detection of bovine leptospirosis must be interpreted.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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