Passive transfer of maternal immunoglobulin isotype antibodies against tetanus and influenza and their effect on the response of foals to vaccination

William D Wilson, J. E. Mihalyi, S. Hussey, D. P. Lunn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

75 Scopus citations

Abstract

Influenza and tetanus-specific antibodies of the IgG sub-isotypes are posively transferred to foals via colostrum and inhibit their response to inactivated influenza vaccines and tetanus toxoid. High titres of influenza antibodies of IgGa and IgGb subisotypes and tetanus antibodies of the IgGa, IgGb and IgG(T) subisotypes were detected in postsucking serum samples collected from foals born to mares that had received booster doses of multicomponent vaccines during the last 2 months of gestation. Thereafter, titres declined in an exponential manner but were still detectable in all foals at age 26 weeks, regardless of whether they had been vaccinated prior to age 26 weeks. Mean ± s.e. half-life of decline of influenza IgGa antibodies (27.0 ± 2.3 days) was significantly shorter than that of influenza IgGb antibodies (39.1 ± 2.7 days; P<0.005). Tetanus IgGa and IgGb antibodies declined with half-lives of 28.8 ± 3.0 and 34.8 ± 5.1 days, respectively. Titres of tetanus IgG(T) antibodies were substantially higher than those of influenza IgG(T) antibodies in postsucking samples and remained so through age 26 weeks, declining with a half-life of approximately 35 days. Postsucking titres of tetanus and influenza antibodies of the IgA isotype were low and declined rapidly to undetectable levels. Yearlings showed significant increases in titre of influenza IgGa, IgGb and IgG(T) subisotype antibodies but no increase in influenza IgA antibodies in response to 2 doses of multicomponent vaccines containing tetanus toxoid and inactivated influenza A-1 and A-2 antigens. Yearlings also showed strong tetanus IgGa, IgGb and IgG(T) subisotype responses to one dose of vaccine and a substantial further rise in titre in response to administration of a second dose 3 weeks later, but failed to show an increase in titre of tetanus IgA antibodies. The influenza and tetanus IgGa, IgGb and IgG(T) subisotype responses of 6-month-old foals to vaccination followed the same pattern as those shown by yearlings but titres were generally lower. In contrast, 3-month-old foals failed to show increases in titre of either influenza or tetanus IgG subisotypes in response to 2 doses of vaccine and generally needed 1-3 additional booster doses of vaccine to achieve titres similar to those achieved by yearlings after 2 doses. Based on the finding that maternal antibodies exert a significant inhibitory effect on the response of foals to tetanus toxoid and inactivated influenza antigens, it is recommended that primary immunisation of foals born to vaccinated mares should not commence before age 6 months.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)644-650
Number of pages7
JournalEquine Veterinary Journal
Volume33
Issue number7
StatePublished - Nov 2001

Keywords

  • Foals
  • Horse
  • Immunoglobulin
  • Influenza
  • Maternal antibodies
  • Tetanus
  • Vaccination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)

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