Systemic Distribution of Viral Antigen in Alpacas Persistently Infected With Bovine Pestivirus

J. N. Henningson, D. J. Steffen, C. L. Topliff, Kathy L. Kurth, R. R. Dubielzig, B. W. Brodersen, D. Bedenice, K. M. Eskridge, R. J. Callan, C. Reggiardo, G. P. Rupp, C. L. Kelling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Recently, confirmed occurrences of persistent bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) infection in North American alpacas have raised concerns about the role of persistently infected (PI) alpacas in transmission of virus among herds, yet only limited pathological descriptions of persistent infections in alpacas have been reported. The objective of this study was to characterize BVDV antigen distribution in 10 PI alpacas of varying age and to compare viral antigen distribution and localization in tissues of PI alpacas with 5 PI calves of varying age. Ocular dysplasia was evident in 1 PI alpaca, constituting the first reported congenital ocular lesion in PI alpacas. Viral antigen was widely distributed in alpaca tissues and was prominent in neurons, endothelial cells, and vascular tunica media myocytes but had limited distribution in lymphoid tissues and moderate distribution in epithelium of several organ systems of alpacas. Macrophages in the alpaca gastrointestinal system submucosa and lymph node medullary sinuses often had prominent labeling. In addition, only 1 alpaca had antigen labeling in the bone marrow in contrast to PI cattle. Labeled cells in calf tissues were more widely distributed, occurring prominently in lymphoid and epithelial tissues. Common features of the 2 host species were widespread antigen labeling and absence of lymphoid depletion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)308-317
Number of pages10
JournalVeterinary Pathology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 13 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • alpacas
  • bovine pestivirus
  • bovine viral diarrhea virus
  • camelids
  • immunohistochemistry
  • New World
  • persistent infection
  • systemic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Systemic Distribution of Viral Antigen in Alpacas Persistently Infected With Bovine Pestivirus'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this