Ovine coronavirus infection

Ovine coronavirus infection

Ovine coronavirus infection


Current Authors:
L J SAIF - Professor, MS, PhD, Food Animal Health Research Program, CFAES and CVM, OARDC, Ohio State University, 1680 Madison Ave, Wooster, Ohio, 44691, USA 
K JUNG - Research Scientist and Leading Expert, Food Animal Health Research Program, OARDC, Ohio State University, 1680 Madison Ave, Wooster, Ohio, 44691, USA
Q  WANG - Associate Professor, PhD, Ohio State University, 1680 Madison Ave, Wooster, Ohio, 44691, USA 


Virus particles that morphologically resemble coronaviruses have been detected in the faeces of sheep in Australia,4, 8 New Zealand,1 Chile 5 Scotland7 and Hungary.3 Antibodies reactive with bovine coronavirus have been detected in sheep in Germany,2 Japan6 and Sweden.9 However, the existence of a specific ovine coronavirus has never been proven and the antibodies and coronavirus-like particles in sheep most probably result from bovine coronavirus (BCV) infections transmitted directly or indirectly from cattle. This is supported by the transmission of BCV from cattle to sheep under experimental conditions.9 In addition, a relationship between BCV seropositive sheep and cattle contact has been demonstrated in serological studies in Sweden.9 It remains to be determined whether BCV can be transmitted between sheep and if the infection is clinically important.


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  2. LIEBERMANN, H.V., HILLE, G. & HEROLD, M., 1986. Coronavirus infections of sheep. Monatshefte für Veterinär-Medizin, 41, 814–815.
  3. NAGY, B., NAGY, G., PALFI, V. & BOSZO, M., 1983. Occurrence of cryptosporidia, rotavirus, coronavirus-like particles and K99+ Escherichia coli in goat kids and lambs. Proceedings of the Third International Symposium on Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosis, Ames, Iowa, USA, 2, 525–531..
  4. PASS, D.A., PENHALE, W.J., WILCOX, G.E. & BATEY, R.G., 1982. Intestinal coronavirus-like particles in sheep with diarrhoea. The Veterinary Record, 111, 106–107
  5. REINHARDT, G., ZAMORA, J., TADICH, N., POLETTE, M., AGUILAR, M., RIEDERMANN, S. & PALISSON, J., 1995. Diagnosis of coronavirus in sheep in Valdidia province, X region, Chile. Archivos de Medicina Veterinaria, 27, 129–132.
  6. SATO, K., INABA, Y., MIURA, Y., TOKUHISA, S., AKASHI, H., SHINOZAKI, T. & MATUMOTO, M., 1981. Neutralizing antibody to calf diarrhea coronavirus in various animal species in Japan. Microbiology and Immunology, 25, 623–625.
  7. SNODGRASS, D., HERRING, J., REID, H., SCOTT, F. & GRAY, E., 1980. Virus infections in cattle and sheep in Scotland 1975–1978. The Veterinary Record, 106, 193–195..
  8. TZIPORI, S., SMITH, M., MAKIN, T. & MCCAUGHAN, C., 1978. Enteric coronavirus-like particles in sheep. Australian Veterinary Journal, 54, 320–321.
  9. TRAVEN, M., CARLSSON, U., LUNDEN, A. & LARSSON, B., 1999. Serum antibodies to bovine coronavirus in Swedish sheep. Acta Veterinaria Scandinavica, 40, 69–74.

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