Sheep were inoculated with 2 ml of 107 plaque forming units per ml of purified prototypes of the four United States serotypes (10, 11, 13 and 17) of bluetongue virus. Nine weeks following the initial inoculation, a challenge inoculation with homologous virus was done. Animals were followed for virus isolation and evidence of cell-mediated immunity by weekly lymphocyte stimulation tests (LST). Two dilutions (10 μg/ml and 1 μg/ml) of pure virus from each of the purified serotypes were used as antigen as were the phytomitogens phytohemagglutinin, Concanavalin A, and pokeweed mitogen. LST data were analyzed by the analysis of variance method and reported as counts per minute and stimulation index (SI). Significant SI were observed following primary and secondary challenge with both homologous and heterologous virus. There was evidence of lymphocyte perturbations characterized by a sharp decrease in response to mitogens following primary and secondary challenge lasting for one week followed by a significant increase in blastogenesis three to four weeks after inoculation of virus. These results provide evidence that cell-mediated immunity is evident in bluetongue infection, that there is cross reactivity between viral serotypes and that BTV infection leads to perturbations in lymphocyte function including suppression of responses. An increase in the blastogenic response to phytomitogens correlated with viral clearance.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology