Volume 68 (2006) Issue 6 Pages 543-548
The surface glycoprotein G is considered as the major neutralizing and protective antigen of bovine ephemeral fever virus (BEFV). Comparison of the deduced amino acid sequence of G protein of BEFV isolates during the period 1984-2004 outbreaks in Taiwan showed amino acid substitutions in the neutralizing epitopes. All the isolates differ markedly in the neutralizing epitope at the same amino acid positions compared to the currently available killed vaccine strain (Tn73). Tn88128 strain isolated in 1999 showed the maximum variability of 12 amino acids, 5 amino acid in the neutralization epitope and 7 apart from, respectively. Combinations of both Tn88128 (1999) and commercially available vaccine strain (Tn73) were developed and its safety was evaluated in mice, guinea pigs, calves, and pregnant cows. None of the animals showed any adverse effect or clinical signs. Calves were immunized with commercial vaccine (Tn73) and, combined vaccine (Tn73 and Tn88128), respectively, with adjuvants such as Al-gel and water-in-oil-in-water (w/o/w) oil and PBS alone and challenged with Tn88128 strains. Except PBS administered animals, all the vaccinated animals showed protective immune response. However, animals immunized with combined vaccine plus w/o/w adjuvant elicited stronger neutralization antibodies and long lasting immunity compared to other vaccines.