Bovine cytokine expression during different phases of bovine leukemia virus infection

Robert G. Keefe, Yeon Choi, David A. Ferrick, Jeffrey L Stott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


The potential role of aberrant cytokine production in the pathogenesis of bovine leukemia virus (BLV) was studied by analyzing cytokine mRNA expression in pokeweed-stimulated PBMLs of cows in different phases of disease progression. To analyze the mRNA, a semi-quantitative RT-PCR assay was developed. The RT-PCR assay was developed for detection of IL-2, -4, -6, -10, -12, IFN-γ and actin using cDNA derived from phorbol-stimulated peripheral blood mononuclear leukocytes. Using a PCR specific for BLV tax, agar gel immunodiffusion and white blood cell counts, BLV-negative, BLV- positive aleukemic (AL), and BLV-positive persistently lymphocytotic (PL) cattle were identified. Peripheral blood lymphocytes cultured in vitro for 24 h in pokeweed mitogen were analyzed for cytokine production using the RT-PCR assay. Consistently elevated levels of IL-2 and IL- 12 in AL and PL cattle in pokeweed mitogen-stimulated cells was detected, while IFN-γ was elevated in the AL but not the PL cattle.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-51
Number of pages13
JournalVeterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - May 1997


  • Bovine leukemia virus
  • Cytokines
  • Polymerase chain reaction
  • RT-PCR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Immunology
  • veterinary(all)


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