Bovine leukemia virus (BLV) infection in cattle causes persistent lymphocytosis, and a few percent of infected animals develop lymphoid tumors, namely enzootic bovine leukosis (EBL). In this study, a 440-bp fragment of the env gene was amplified from 204 tumor samples collected from different regions of Japan and analyzed by restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) to determine the association of BLV with EBL. Of the seven RFLP types defined, types I, II, and III were dominant and found in 12.7, 75.0, and 8.3% of tumor samples, respectively. Cattle harboring type III virus were significantly older than other animals at the time of diagnosis of EBL. Type III viruses were found in approximately 33% and 5.5% of Japanese Black and Holstein cattle, respectively, with EBL. These findings indicate that genetically distinct BLV was associated with EBL in Japan and that the genetic profile may influence the leukemogenicity of the virus.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Jul 1, 2011
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