Implementation of two-step vaccination in the control of bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD)

aInstitute of Virology, Department of Infectious Diseases, School of Veterinary Medicine, Bünteweg 17, D-30559 Hannover, Germany bVeterinary Practice Drs. Eicken and Ennen, D-26939 Ovelgoenne, Germany cNiedersächsische Tierseuchenkasse, D-30169 Hannover, Germany


Bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) control/eradication programmes based on the test and removal of persistently infected cattle without use of vaccination were first introduced by the Scandinavian countries in the early 1990s. Within the last 10 years the programmes have proven to be very successful and have served as a blueprint for several other European regions. However, in areas with high cattle densities, intense animal trade and high BVD prevalence this control approach is risky, because there is a high probability that herds, which have been cleared of persistently infected (PI) animals and have become partly or fully susceptible to reintroduction of the virus, will come in contact with a BVD virus (BVDV) infected animal. A combination of the test and removal strategy with subsequent systematic vaccination of cattle could overcome this problem. The goals of vaccination in such a programme is protection against reintroduction of BVDV into herds free from PI cattle and foetal protection of pregnant animals accidentally exposed to the virus.

Two-step vaccination is based on the use of inactivated BVDV-1 vaccine for priming followed by a live attenuated vaccine booster 4 weeks later. The immune response elicited by such a vaccination scheme has proven to be long lasting and foetal infection after challenge with BVDV-1 and BVDV-2 was prevented in pregnant animals 5 months after vaccination. These findings suggest that the implementation of a two-step vaccination in the initial phase of control programmes in addition to test and removal of PI animals in areas with high cattle densities and endemic BVD is practical and efficacious.


This article was published in Preventive Veterinary Medicine, 72, V. Moenniga, K. Eickenb, U. Flebbec, H.-R. Freya, B. Grummera, L. Haasa, I. Greiser-Wilkea and B. Liessa, Implementation of two-step vaccination in the control of bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD), 109-114, Copyright Elsevier 2005.