Lambs from two flocks with a chronic respiratory disease characterized by paroxysmal cough and rectal prolapses were tested for their skin reactivity to Mycoplasma ovipneumoniae (MO) and M. arginini (MA) antigens (Ags). There was a marked, immediate skin reaction to intradermal injection of MO Ag in many of the tested lambs. Some of these positive lambs also reacted to MA Ag. Phosphate buffered saline (PBS) used as a negative control gave no skin reaction in any of the tested animals. In addition, simultaneous serological tests revealed low antibody levels against MO and MA. However, both agents could be routinely isolated from nasal swabs of the affected lambs. There is reason to suspect that an immediate type hypersensitivity to MO Ag and perhaps to other allergens that develops in association with the mycoplasmal infection contributes to this coughing syndrome.
Iowa State University
Niang, Mamadou; Kaeberle, Merlin L.; Lopez-virella, Jose; and McClain, Arnold, "Type I Hypersensitivity in Lambs With Coughing Syndrome" (1998). Sheep Research Report, 1997. 6.