This review briefly describes the virus classification, clinical signs, epidemiology, diagnosis, disinfection, and vaccines related equine group A rotavirus (RVA) infection. Equine RVA is one of the most important pathogens causing diarrhoea in foals. The main transmission route is faecal–oral, and the clinical signs are diarrhoea, fever, lethargy, and anorexia (decreased suckling). Some human RVA rapid antigen detection kits based on the principles of the immunochromatographic assay are useful for the diagnosis of equine RVA infection. The kits are used in daily clinical practice because of their rapidity and ease of handling. Equine RVA is a non-enveloped virus and is more resistant to disinfectants than enveloped viruses such as equine influenza virus and equine herpesvirus. Although amphoteric soaps and quaternary ammonium compounds are commonly used in veterinary hygiene, they are generally ineffective against equine RVA. Alcohol products, aldehydes, and chlorine- and iodine-based compounds are effective against equine RVA. Inactivated vaccines have been used for equine RVA infection in some countries. Pregnant mares are intramuscularly inoculated with a vaccine, and thus their colostrum has abundant antibodies against RVA at the time of birth. According to G and P classification defined in accordance with the VP7 and VP4 genes, respectively, the predominant equine RVAs circulating in horse populations globally are G3P and G14P equine RVAs, but the vaccines contain only the G3P equine RVA strain. Ideally, a G14P equine RVA should be added as a vaccine strain to obtain a better vaccine effect.
In the past decade, mass spectrometry has become an important technology for protein identification. Recent developments in mass spectrometry allow a large number of identifications in samples; therefore, mass-spectrometry-based techniques have been applied to the discovery of biomarkers. Here, we conducted a proteomic study to compare the proteomes in sera between healthy Thoroughbreds and Thoroughbreds with respiratory disease associated with transport (RDT). We found that four proteins, apolipoprotein F, lipopolysaccharide binding protein, lysozyme and protein S100-A8, were upregulated, while keratin 1 was downregulated in the RDT group. It is assumed that inflammation and immune response are involved in the changes of these proteins. The findings suggested that these proteins are potentially useful for elucidating the mechanism of development of RDT.
Erythrocyte alloantigen frequencies of draft horses in Japan were investigated to assess blood donor suitability for transfusion. Here, 148 Japanese draft, 69 Percheron, and 65 Breton horses were blood-typed and subjected to an indirect antiglobulin test. Regarding the major immunogenic factors, the rates of Aa- and Qa-negative horses ranged from 0.35 to 0.49 and from 0.82 to 1.00, respectively. The rate of alloantibody-positive horses ranged from 0.12 to 0.35. Although the prevalence of alloantibodies in these horses was higher than that expected naturally, the rates of Aa- and Qa-negative horses were higher than those of some breeds reported previously. The current draft horse population could provide potential candidates for donors, and the obtained information may contribute to the selection of a safe donor for transfusion.
This study aimed to evaluate the influence of seasons and sex on body size and hematological and biochemistry parameters of Noma horses, a native Japanese breed. Body size was larger in winter than in summer. Laboratory testing variables, including erythrocytic parameters and urea nitrogen, total cholesterol, and creatinine kinase levels, were higher in winter, while the eosinophil count was higher in summer. These seasonal differences may be related to increased energy consumption of horses due to heat stress. The higher eosinophil counts may have been related to the dermatitis observed in summer. Stallions tended to have smaller bodies compared with mares. Future studies are necessary to investigate the effect of stress in seasonal and sex-based groups.