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Seroepidemiological survey for antibody to Borrelia burgdorferi in cows.

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Abstract

Antibody to Borrelia burgdorferi was examined in 380 healthy and 38 clinical cases of cows from Hokkaido and Shizuoka in Japan. In healthy animals, IgG and IgM antibody to B. burgdorferi HO14 strain were found in 44 cows (14.6%) and 24 cows (8.0%) from Hokkaido. In contrast, antibody-positive case was not observed except for only 1 case which was IgM positive (1/79: 1.3%) in cows from Shizuoka. Mean antibody levels of healthy animals in Hokkaido and Shizuoka were 0.651 and 0.263 (IgG antibody to HO14 strain), 0.642 and 0.169 (IgG to HP3 strain), 0.613 and 0.367 (IgM to HO14 strain) and 0.582 and 0.286 (IgM to HP3 strain). The differences of the antibody levels between cows from Hokkaido and Shizuoka were significant. Seasonal difference was found in seropositive cows from Hokkaido. The rate of seropositive cows was high in summer (23.4% in June and 11.8% in July) but low in winter (0% in January and February). The pattern was discussed to be associated with activation of ticks. One of 4 cows with arthritis showed significantly higher IgG antibody level than that of healthy cows and cows with some
disease, although the serum was collected from Shizuoka where antibody-positive animals for B. burgdorferi were rare among healthy cows. This high IgG antibody may suggest that the arthritis of such cows was caused by infection with B. burgdorferi. Two of 7 cows with unclassified abortion showed positive antibody reaction in Hokkaido. These cases, however, may not be related to the B. burgdorferi infection because the positive rate was similar to those of healthy cows in the same season.

Microbiol Immunol. 1992;36(10):1029-39.

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