2016 Volume 78 Issue 11 Pages 1669-1672
Borna disease virus (BDV) is a virus that causes a neurological disease in domestic animals, including a variety of animal species in Japan. Few studies have examined the mode of transmission of this virus in cattle, and the exact mechanisms underlying the transmission of the virus need to be elucidated. This study aimed to examine the contribution of vertical transmission of the virus, which occurs when the virus is transmitted from the mother to offspring during gestation or birth. We used an epidemiological approach. The relative risk (RR) was calculated for cattle born to BDV sero-positive cows from farms with a higher within-herd prevalence of BDV (56.8%). We tested the sera of 1,122 dairy cattle from 24 dairy herds in Hokkaido Prefecture, Japan, for BDV infection using the ELISA and western blotting method. The overall level of BDV sero-prevalence was 22.1%. Seroprevalence was significantly higher in closed-breeding herds that do not have buying in cows (39.7%) than in farms that restock cattle by buying in cows (4.4%, P<0.01). The overall RR of BDV vertical transmission from infected mothers to their daughters was 1.86 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.54–2.56). Our results show that vertical transmission contributes significantly to BDV transmission in the farms tested in this study.