Evaluation of the stable fly (Stomoxys calcitrans) as a vector of enzootic bovine leukosis.

A. F. Weber, R. D. Moon, D. K. Sorensen, D. W. Bates, J. C. Meiske, C. A. Brown, N. L. Rohland, E. C. Hooker, W. O. Strand

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Abstract

Experiments reported here were directed at 2 questions: (1) Can the stable fly (Stomoxys calcitrans) transmit enzootic bovine leukosis? (2) Could early viremia augment the probability of transmission by this insect? In one vector experiment, calves and bovine leukemia virus (BLV)-infected cows were housed with and without stable flies. The calves were monitored serologically during a 3-month postexposure period, using the agar gel immunodiffusion test. All fly-infested and fly-free calves remained BLV-seronegative. For a second vector experiment, donor calves, newly injected with blood from BLV-infected cows with high virus expression, were tethered alternately between uninoculated, weaned BLV-seronegative calves. These groups were housed with or without flies in 2 replicate trials. The inoculated calves from the first replicate seroconverted at 16 and 23 days after inoculation; the inoculated calves from the second replicate seroconverted at 11, 16, 16, and 37 days after inoculation. All uninoculated calves remained BLV-seronegative. In a manual transmission experiment, 50 unfed stable flies were allowed to complete a meal on each of 3 BLV-seronegative calves after feeding on a BLV-seropositive cow with high (42%) virus expression. One control calf was injected with blood from the cow. Seroconversion occurred in the control calf and 1 calf on which flies were given access. A scanning electron microscopic study was made of the everted and closed mouth parts of the stable fly. Given the lymphocyte count in blood from the cow used in the manual vector transmission experiment, it was calculated that 3,950 mouth part volumes would be necessary to transmit BLV.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1543-1549
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of veterinary research
Volume49
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1988

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