Forty-one 8- to 12-week-old wasted pigs were selected from several conventional farms with histories of postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS) and classified into two groups according to their porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) infection status, as determined by in situ hybridization (ISH). Twenty-four pigs tested positive for PCV2 (PCV2-positive group), while 17 pigs tested negative for PCV2 (PCV2-negative group). In addition, eight uninfected healthy pigs from an experimental farm were used as controls. Heparinized blood samples were taken to obtain peripheral blood mononuclear cells. The CD4+, CD8+, CD4+ CD8+ (double-positive [DP]), and immunoglobulin M-positive (IgM+) cell subsets were analyzed by flow cytometry with appropriate monoclonal antibodies. Histopathological studies were done to evaluate the apparent degrees of lymphocyte depletion in different lymphoid organs (superficial inguinal and mesenteric lymph nodes, Peyer's patches, tonsils, and spleen) and to determine the viral load of the PCV2 genome by using an ISH technique. Animals of the PCV2-positive group showed a significant downshift of the CD8+ and DP cell subsets compared to the other groups (P < 0.05). Moreover, in PCV2-positive pigs, the amount of PCV2 genome in lymphoid tissues was related to the degree of cell depletion in those tissues (P < 0.05) as well as to the relative decrease in IgM+ and CD8+ cells in peripheral blood. These data support the notion that PCV2-positive pigs might have an impaired immune response.
|Journal||Clinical and Diagnostic Laboratory Immunology|
|Publication status||Published - 25 Mar 2002|