Studies were performed to determine if mucosal vaccination with inactivated avian metapneumovirus (aMPV) subtype C protected turkey poults from clinical disease and virus replication following mucosal challenge. Decreases in clinical disease were not observed in vaccinated groups, and the vaccine failed to inhibit virus replication in the tracheas of 96% of vaccinated birds. Histopathologically, enhancement of pulmonary lesions following virus challenge was associated with birds receiving the inactivated aMPV vaccine compared to unvaccinated birds. As determined by an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), all virus-challenged groups increased serum immunoglobulin (Ig) G and IgA antibody production against the virus following challenge; however, the unvaccinated aMPV-challenged group displayed the highest increases in virus-neutralizing antibody. On the basis of these results it is concluded that intranasal vaccination with inactivated aMPV does not induce protective immunity, reduce virus shedding, or result in decreased histopathologic lesions.
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Vol. 52 • No. 1