Antigenic variation among bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) strains and the role of different cell fixation methods in immunoassays


Antigenic variation among 13 Quebec isolates of bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV), 4 reference strains and 2 American isolates were studied by peroxidase-linked antibody assay (PLA assay) and neutralization test (NT). The Quebec strains consisted of 3 isolates before 1993 and 10 isolates from 1993. In the PLA assay, we compared 2 different fixatives, acetone and formalin. Acetone-fixation allowed us to identify 6 groups from amongst the viruses tested. All the Quebec isolates were different from the reference strains. In addition, antigenic variation was detected between Quebec isolates obtained before and during 1993. However, PLA assays performed after formalin fixation did not detect these antigenic variations. Neutralization tests were carried out with 2 polyclonal antibodies (PAb) and 6 monoclonal antibodies (MAb). They were used to classify BVDV strains and isolates into 4 groups and 7 subgroups respectively. In conclusion, we demonstrated that the BVDV isolates from the 1993 outbreak in Quebec are antigenically different from reference strains and from isolates existing in Quebec before 1993. In addition, we have shown that 2 internationally used fixation-methods in PLA assay give different results. The usefulness of each method is discussed.

Elahi SM, Harpin S, Cornaglia E, Talbot B, and Elazhary Y. Can J Vet Res. 1997 January; 61(1): 34–38.