Four adult black-tailed deer (Odocoileus hemioneus columbianus) and five fawns were inoculated with bluetongue virus (BTV) and one adult deer was inoculated with epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) virus to produce clinical signs and lesions of hemorrhagic disease. Serologic response was monitored using the agar gel immunodiffusion (AGID) test and the competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (C-ELISA). Embryonating chicken eggs and vero cells were used to detect viremia. No animal exhibited clinical or pathologic signs of hemorrhagic disease. Bluetongue viremia was detected as early as 2 days post-inoculation (DPI-2) and in some animals, persisted until at least DPI-12. The earliest detection of BTV antibodies using the AGID was DPI-8. Two adult deer remained seropositive for BTV antibodies for >9 mo and 1 yr, respectively, using both the AGID and C-ELISA tests. We observed cross reactions between BT and EHD antibodies using the AGID tests. Also, the AGID test did not consistently detect exposure to BTV. Viremia was not detected in the deer inoculated with EHD although this animal was AGID positive between DPI-6 and DPI-49.
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Vol. 28 • No. 4