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Can J Vet Res. 1987 Jul;51(3):345-9.

Effects of infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus infection on bovine airway reactivity.

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  • 1Department of Biomedical Sciences, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph.


The response of isolated tracheal and bronchial strips to isoproterenol in vitro was studied in eleven male Jersey calves. Clinical, microbiological and pathological evaluations of the calves were carried out. In calves exposed once or twice to infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus, the relaxation threshold of the trachealis muscle to isoproterenol was significantly (p less than 0.05) impaired (threshold 5.0 X 10(-7) M, single exposure and 1.0 X 10(-7) M, double exposure), when compared with uninfected controls (threshold 1.0 X 10(-8) M). Single infection significantly impaired tracheal relaxation to isoproterenol doses from 1.0 X 10(-7) to 5.0 X 10(-4) M, and double infection significantly impaired tissue responses at drug doses from 1.0 X 10(-7) to 1 X 10(-4) M. Bronchial relaxation threshold was not significantly inhibited (p less than 0.05) in singly infected or doubly infected animals (threshold 5.0 X 10(-8) M and 1.0 X 10(-8) M, respectively), when compared with uninfected controls (threshold 1.0 X 10(-9) M). Single infection significantly impaired bronchial relaxation at isoproterenol doses from 1.0 X 10(-7) M to 5.0 X 10(-6) M while double infection significantly impaired relaxation only at 5.0 X 10(-7) M. The disruption of normal homeostatic bronchodilatory mechanisms may predispose animals infected with infectious bovine rhinotracheitis virus to secondary bacterial infections due to excessive airway constriction and subsequent compromise of lung defenses.

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