Failure to Detect Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus in Necropsied Farm-raised White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus Virginianus) in Pennsylvania

Brief Communication


Correspondence: 1Corresponding Author: Jason W Brooks, Animal Diagnostic Laboratory, The Pennsylvania State University, Orchard Road, University Park, PA 16802, e-mail:

Between January 1 and December 31, 2005 gross and histologic examinations were performed on carcasses of 61 farm-raised white-tailed deer originating from Pennsylvania. Single-tube real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (real-time RT-PCR) for the detection of bovine viral diarrhea virus type 1 (BVDV-1) and type 2 (BVDV-2) was performed on each animal. Virus isolation was performed on tissue samples from 25 of 61 animals. Immunohistochemical (IHC) staining of ear-notch skin to identify BVDV antigen was performed on each animal. All tissues samples tested negative for both BVDV-1 and BVDV-2 by real-time RT-PCR, virus isolation, and IHC. Gross or histopathologic lesions suggestive of BVDV infection were not detected. Results of this study suggest that BVD is not a common cause of mortality in farm-raised white-tailed deer in Pennsylvania.

Key Words: Bovine viral diarrhea virus • Odocoileus virginianus • PCR • persistent infection • white-tailed deer



Brooks JW1, Key DW, Hattel AL, Hovingh EP, et al.: J Vet Diagn Invest 19: 298-300, 2007.