Objective - To evaluate protection against systemic infection and clinical disease provided by use of a modified-live noncytopathic bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) type 1 vaccine in calves challenged with NY-1 BVDV. Animals - 10 calves, 5 to 7 months of age. Procedures - Calves were allocated (n = 5/group) to be nonvaccinated or vaccinated SC on day 0 with BVDV type 1 (WBL strain). Calves in both groups were challenged intranasally with NY-1 BVDV on day 21. Calves' rectal temperatures and clinical signs of disease were recorded daily, total and differential WBC and platelet counts were performed, and serum neutralizing antibody titers against NY-1 BVDV were determined. Histologic examinations and immunohistochemical analyses to detect gross lesions and distribution of viral antigens, respectively, were performed. Results - After challenge exposure to NY-1 BVDV, nonvaccinated calves developed high rectal temperatures, increased respiratory rates, viremia, leukopenia, lymphopenia, and infection of the thymus. Vaccinated calves did not develop high rectal temperatures or clinical signs of respiratory tract disease. Vaccinated calves appeared to be protected against systemic replication of virus in that they did not develop leukopenia, lymphopenia, viremia, or infection of target organs, and infectious virus was not detected in peripheral blood mononuclear cells or the thymus. Conclusions and clinical relevance - The modified-live BVDV vaccine protected calves against systemic infection and disease after experimental challenge exposure with NY-1 BVDV. The vaccine protected calves against infection and viremia and prevented infection of target lymphoid cells.
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