Open Access Research article

Evaluation of pathogenesis caused in cattle and guinea pig by a Mycobacterium bovis strain isolated from wild boar

Virginia Meikle1, María V Bianco1, Federico C Blanco1, Andrea Gioffré1, Sergio Garbaccio2, Lucas Vagnoni3, Julio Di Rienzo4, Ana Canal5, Fabiana Bigi1 and Angel Cataldi1*

Author Affiliations

1 Institute of Biotechnology, Hurlingham, Argentina

2 Institute of Pathobiology, Center for Veterinary and Agricultural Research, National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA), Hurlingham, Argentina

3 Center for Veterinary and Agricultural Research, National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA), Hurlingham, Argentina

4 School of Agricultural Sciences National University of Córdoba, Argentina

5 School of Veterinary, National University of Litoral, Esperanza, Argentina

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BMC Veterinary Research 2011, 7:37  doi:10.1186/1746-6148-7-37

Published: 12 July 2011

Abstract

Background

In many regions of the world, wild mammals act as reservoir of Mycobacterium bovis, a situation that prevents the eradication of bovine tuberculosis. In order to observe whether a strain isolated from a wild boar, previously tested as highly virulent in a mice model, is also virulent in cattle, we performed cattle experimental inoculation with this strain

Results

Groups of Friesian calves were either infected with the wild boar strain M. bovis 04-303 or with the bovine strain NCTC10772 as a control. We found that antigen-specific IFN-γ release in whole blood samples occurred earlier in animals infected with M. bovis 04-303. Both M. bovis strains resulted in a positive skin test, with animals infected with the wild boar isolate showing a stronger response. These results and the presence of more severe organ lesions, with granuloma and pneumonic areas in cattle demonstrate that the wild boar isolate is more virulent than the NCTC10772 strain. Additionally, we tested the infectivity of the M. bovis strains in guinea pigs and found that M. bovis 04-303 had the highest pathogenicity.

Conclusions

M. bovis strains isolated from wild boars may be pathogenic for cattle, producing TB lesions.

Keywords:
boars; tuberculosis; bovines; Mycobacterium bovis