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J Vet Diagn Invest. 1995 Oct;7(4):456-64.

Persistence of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus in serum and semen of adult boars.

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Department of Veterinary Science, South Dakota State University, Brookings 57007, USA.


Four seronegative adult boars were intranasally inoculated with porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) isolate VR-2332. Serum and semen were collected 2-3 times weekly for over 100 days postinoculation (DPI). Serum samples were assayed for PRRSV by virus isolation (VI) and a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and screened for antibodies to PRRSV using the indirect fluorescent antibody (IFA) and virus neutralization (VN) tests. Semen was assayed for PRRSV RNA by PCR. Virus and viral RNA was detected in the serum of all boars within 1 DPI by Vi and/or PCR. However, VI results indicated that viremia was transient and occurred from 1 to 9 DPI. Viral RNA was detected in serum from 1 to 31 DPI. In the acute stage of the infection, PRRSV RNA was detected in serum by PCR prior to the presence of viral RNA in semen. The PRRSV RNA was detected in semen as early as 3 DPI and persisted for 25 DPI in 2 of the boars and 56 and 92 DPI in the remaining 2 boars. Detection of PRRSV RNA in semen occurred 2-8 and 28-35 days prior to the detection of antibodies by IFA and VN, respectively. PRRSV was isolated from the bulbourethral gland of the boar that shed viral RNA in semen for 92 DPI. These results suggest that PRRSV RNA can be detected by PCR in boar serum and semen, and may persist for variable periods of time. Viremia and the serologic status of the boar are not adequate indicators of when PRRSV or PRRSV RNA is being shed in the semen. Preliminary findings also indicated that neither shipping stress nor reinoculation with homologous PRRSV resulted in viremia or viral RNA shedding in semen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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