Association between herd exposure to BVDV-infection and bulk milk somatic cell count of Flemish dairy farms

Prev Vet Med. 2013 Apr 1;109(1-2):148-51. doi: 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2012.09.013. Epub 2012 Oct 9.


The purpose of this study was to investigate the statistical association between herd bovine viral diarrhoea (BVD) status based on bulk milk antibody detection and monthly bulk milk somatic cell count (BMSCC) as a reflection of the udder health. A distinction was made between vaccinating and non-vaccinating herds via a questionnaire concerning BVD-vaccination. No significant difference in BMSCC was found between vaccinating (228,300 cells/ml; SD 180,019) and non-vaccinating (237,070 cells/ml; SD 77,900) herds. Non-vaccinating herds (n=243) were selected, and the relationship between a single BVDV-antibody titre and the BMSCC of each herd over a 12-month observation period evaluated. For this purpose, the non-vaccinating herds were divided into five groups depending on bulk milk BVDV-antibody titres. Overall, no significant relationship between the antibody titre and the BMSCC was found. Still, when comparing the category with the lowest S/P ratio (essentially BVDV-naïve herds; BMSCC=211,390 cells/ml) with the combined four other categories (BMSCC=242,790 cells/ml), a significant difference in BMSSC was observed (P=0.01).

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Viral / analysis*
  • Belgium / epidemiology
  • Bovine Virus Diarrhea-Mucosal Disease / epidemiology
  • Bovine Virus Diarrhea-Mucosal Disease / prevention & control*
  • Bovine Virus Diarrhea-Mucosal Disease / virology
  • Cattle
  • Cell Count / veterinary
  • Dairying
  • Diarrhea Viruses, Bovine Viral / immunology*
  • Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay / veterinary
  • Female
  • Milk / cytology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vaccination / veterinary*


  • Antibodies, Viral