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Prevalence of Mycoplasma bovis Infection in calves and dairy cows in Western Australia

Gogoi-Tiwari, J., Tiwari, H.K., Wawegama, N.K., Premachandra, C., Robertson, I.D.ORCID: 0000-0002-4255-4752, Fisher, A.D., Waichigio, F.K., Irons, P. and Aleri, J.W. (2022) Prevalence of Mycoplasma bovis Infection in calves and dairy cows in Western Australia. Veterinary Sciences, 9 (7). Art. 351.

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Mycoplasma bovis (M. bovis) can cause a multitude of diseases in cattle, with detrimental effects on the farm economy and the welfare of both adult and young cattle. The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence of M. bovis in adult cows and calves in the south-west region of Western Australia. A cross-sectional study was conducted on 29 dairy farms with 699 apparently healthy adult lactating cows and 495 young calves during 2019–2020. Nasal swabs and blood samples collected from the animals and bulk tank milk (BTM) samples were assessed for M. bovis-specific proteins and antibodies by using polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and Mycoplasma immunogenic lipase A- Enzyme-Linked Immune Sorbent Assay (MilA ELISA). A seroprevalence of 42.5% (95% CI: 38.9–46.2) and 61% (95% CI: 56.6–65.2) was found in adult lactating cows and calves, respectively. The herd-level seroprevalence of M. bovis ranged from 4% (95% CI: 07–19.5) to 92% (95% CI: 75.0–97.8) in adult lactating cows and 25% (95% CI: 10.2–49.5) to 87% (95% CI: 67.9–95.5) for calves in these farms. None of the BTM and nasal swab samples were positive for M. bovis, indicating an absence of any current active infections on the farms. The female calves and pure Holstein–Friesian animals are twice as likely to be seropositive for M. bovis compared to male calves (OR 2.4; 95% CI: 1.7–3.5) and Holstein–Friesian crossbred calves (OR 2.4; 95% CI: 1.7–3.5). The high seroprevalence in both adult and young cattle in the southwest dairy farms of Western Australia warrants more effective farm biosecurity measures and further evaluation of the current prevention and management measures practiced on the farms.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Centre for Animal Production and Health
Publisher: MDPI
Copyright: © 2022 by the authors.
United Nations SDGs: Goal 15: Life on Land
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