Interferon-gamma production in vitro from whole blood of foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) vaccinated and infected cattle after incubation with inactivated FMDV

Studies were performed to determine whether a rapid method to detect cell mediated immune responses to foot-and-mouth disease virus (FMDV) could be used either as a diagnostic test or provide a correlate of protection in animals post-vaccination. Using protocols based on the BOVIGAM assay for tuberculosis, whole blood samples from FMDV vaccinated or control animals, before and after challenge infection, were stimulated overnight with inactivated FMDV antigen. The quantity of interferon gamma (IFN-?) produced in the supernatants was measured using an ELISA. Specific induction of IFN-? was detected in samples from vaccinated, infected and vaccinated-then-infected cattle. Further development of this assay may provide a useful tool for the diagnosis of FMDV immune animals, including the identification of vaccinated animals that have been subsequently infected with FMDV. In these studies, combining the results of the IFN-? assay with virus neutralising antibody titre, in groups of vaccinated animals, provided a correlation with the capacity to control virus replication after subsequent challenge.

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