Submitted to: Research Workers in Animal Diseases Conference Proceedings
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/28/1998
Publication Date: N/A
Technical Abstract: The objective of this study was to determine whether a swine Chlamydia trachomatis-like organism shown previously to be a pathogen in gnotobiotic piglets could cause intestinal lesions in young weaned pigs. Eight group 1 pigs nursed their respective sows, consumed unmedicated starter ration, and were weaned and inoculated orally at 21 days of age; 6 pigs received 4 x 10**8 colony-forming units (CFU) chlamydiae and 2 pigs received sham- inoculum. Thirteen group 2 pigs nursed their respective sows for 24 hours; they were then placed in isolator units and fed milk replacer and unmedicated starter ration. Ten group 2 pigs were inoculated orally with 4 x 10**8 CFU chlamydiae at 21 days of age; 3 pigs received sham inoculum. None of the chlamydia-infected pigs developed diarrhea. Villus atrophy was seen histologically in the ileum from chlamydia-infected pigs in both groups 5-7 days postinfection (DPI). Lymphangitis, perilymphangitis, and occasional serositis was seen in the distal jejunum, ileum, and colon from chlamydia-infected pigs in both groups 5-14 DPI. Immunostaining revealed chlamydial antigen in intestinal epithelium and in foci of lymphangitis/ perilymphangitis and serositis. The results indicated that chlamydial strain R27 can cause intestinal lesions in young weaned pigs, but the infection is asymptomatic.