Testing for passive transfer of immunity in foals, and an evaluation of the African horse sickness vaccination schedule.
Crow, Linnet Jean Isobel.
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This thesis comprises an introductory review of the literature, followed by reports of two experiments which are presented in the form of scientific papers. For this reason, there may be some repetition between chapters, particularly in terms of experimental procedure. To avoid unnecessary repetition, a single list of references is given at the end of the thesis. For the sake of completeness , several appendices are attached to Chapters Two and Three which would not ordinarily be included in a scientific paper. The literature review looks at the passive transfer of immunity from the mare to the foal, the consequences of failure of passive transfer of immunity and different methods of testing whether the transfer of passive immunity has occurred. The review concludes with a discussion of vaccination programmes against African horse sickness. Trial One evaluated different tests for determining whether the transfer of passive immunity from mare to foal has occurred in order to determine which of these tests should be used preferentially. A single radial immunodiffusion test was used as the reference standard. A series of samples .was taken from a group of foals and tested using four methods: single radial immunodiffusion , glutaraldehyde coagulation, zinc sulphate turbidity and protein refractometer tests. Trial Two explored African horse sickness vaccination programmes, focusing on when to vaccinate foals for the first time. A series of samples was taken from a group of foals from birth until two months after their second set of African horse sickness vaccinations (one year old). The samples were tested for the presence of African horse sickness antibodies for each of the nine serotypes to determine when maternal immunity fades and to evaluate the effect of each vaccination on the level of immunity.