Trends in Diagnosis and Control of Bovine Mastitis: A Review
Amit Kumar Verma,
Mastitis (inflammation of mammary gland) is a most devastating disease condition in terms of economic losses occurring throughout the world. The etiological agents may vary from place to place depending on climate; animal species and animal husbandry and include wide variety of gram positive and gram negative bacteria; and fungi. They may be either contagious viz. Staphylococcus aureus; Streptococcus agalactiae or environmental viz. S. dysgalactiae, S. uberis, Corynebacterium bovis and Coagulase negative Staphylococcus. Conventional diagnostic tests viz. California Mastitis Test (CMT); R-mastitest and Mast-O-test methods are applied under field conditions; whereas somatic cell count and Bulk Tank Somatic Cell Count (BTSCC) are useful for early mastitis detection and detection of sub clinical or chronic mastitis respectively. In vitro culture based diagnosis require further study as they can detect only viable cells. The advent of Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology along with its various versions like multiplex and real time PCR has improved the rapidity and sensitivity of diagnosis. Circulating micro RNA (miRNA) based diagnosis; immune assay and proteomics based detection along with biochips and biosensors prove to be asset to diagnosticians for advanced diagnosis of this economically important condition. Improvement of milking hygiene; implementation of post-milking teat disinfection; regular control of the milking equipments; implementation of milking order; Improvement of bedding material are the general measures to prevent new cases of mastitis. The use of antibiotics (intramammary infusions; bacteriocins) and herbs (Terminalia spp.) are important for prophylaxis and therapeutics. Vaccines viz. cell based; Recombinant (staphylococcal enterotoxin type C mutant) or chimeric (pauA); live (S. uberis 0140J stain based) and bacterial surface extract based; DNA-based and DNA-protein based have greatly aided in management of bovine mastitis. Quorum sensing and disease resistant breeding using novel biomarkers viz. toll like receptors (TLR) 2 and 4, interleukin (IL) 8; breast cancer type 1 susceptibility protein (BRCA1) and calcium channel voltage-dependent alpha 2/delta sub unit 1 (CACNA2D1) are also indispensable. This mini review gives an overview of all these different aspects that act as trend setters as far as the diagnosis and control of bovine mastitis is concerned to help the diagnosticians; epidemiologists and researchers not to remain ignorant about this grave condition.
Received: January 14, 2013;
Accepted: March 02, 2013;
Published: May 16, 2013
Mastitis (inflammation of mammary gland) is a most devastating disease condition
in terms of economic losses occurring throughout the world (Kumar
et al., 2010). Due to the involvement of multiple etiological agents
it always remained a challenge to veterinarian all over the globe (Vashney
et al., 2012). Depending upon the climatic condition, animal species
and animal husbandry practices etiological agents may vary place to place and
case to case. That is the region that behind the isolation of largest number
of pathogens in a single disease i.e. more than 135 is from the cases of mastitis
(Awandkar et al., 2009; Kumar
et al., 2010). Thus the control and prevention of mastitis is a challenge
and despite of the continuous efforts it is a cause behind the severe economic
losses to dairy industry (FAO, 2005). Rendering the animal
production less and diminution of milk quality and quantity can be the greatest
hurdle in true sense for the dairy and livestock owners along with dairy industry.
Moreover, different forms of mastitis viz., subclinical, clinical, acute make
it a Pandora box for microbiologists (De Vliegher et
al., 2012). The involvement of bacteria, virus, fungi and protozoa make
mastitis an omnibus of most pathogens. In spite of advancement in scientific
skill and management (Amin et al., 2011), milk
remains an excellent growth medium for the growth of almost all kind of microbes
(Kumar et al., 2010). The body temperature of
the animal also supports the growth of microbes and that is the reason due to
which almost all the known pathogens have been isolated or reported from the
cases of mastitis. The presence of all these always have alteration in physical,
physiological conditions of animals and also change the color, texture and composition
of milk (Sharma et al., 2007) which can be used
as markers for the disease diagnosis (Jiusheng et al.,
2008; Syring et al., 2012) and can assist
in the prevention or timely control of pathogens, avoiding the severe damage
to udder and losses in the form of productivity and ultimately economically
(Radostits, 2007). This review imparts some light on
such aspects which can help in better understanding the mastitis with possible
path for the diagnosis along with prevention and control of disease.
Microbiology of bovine mastitis: The etiology of bovine mastitis can
be classified into contagious pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureus,
Streptococcus agalactiae and environmental pathogens viz. S. dysgalactiae,
S. uberis, Corynebacterium bovis and Coagulase negative Staphylococcus
(Reyher et al., 2012). Counting of somatic cell
rises>200,000 cells mL-1 have been seen in cow milk during bacterial
infection and the counting parameters vary between kind of bacterial infection
(Dohoo and Meek, 1982). Schepers
et al. (1997) studied that, somatic cell count of S. aureus is
greater than Corynebacterium bovis infection. Malinowski
et al. (2006) reported that, somatic cell count of coagulase-negative
staphylococci (CNS), Staph. aureus and Streptococcus sp. were
200,000 to 2,000,000 of SCC mL-1 (59.6%), = 10 million mL-1
in intramammary infections by Arcanobacterium pyogenes (95.5%), = 5 million
mL-1 was connected with infections caused by Prototheca sp.
(64.5%), yeast-like fungi (60.2%) and Streptococcus sp. (55.1%). S.
aureus (76.2%), CNS (84.2%), Gram-positive bacilli (72.4%) and Corynebacterium
sp. (83.2%). Among the isolation of bacterial pathogens majority of cases
are reported due to Staphylococcus sp., E. coli; Streptococcus
sp. and Bacillus sp.,; Kliebsiella sp., Proteus sp., Pseudomonas
sp., Micrococcus sp. and Salmonella sp. (Atyabi
et al., 2006; Sahay et al., 2006;
Hawari and Al-Dabbas, 2008; Kumar
et al., 2010). The presence of bacterial pathogens either in monoculture
or with mixed etiology vary from case to case and stage of disease condition.
In most of the acute cases monoculture is recovered (Kumar
et al., 2010).
DIAGNOSTIC OVERVIEW OF BOVINE MASTITIS
Conventional field tests: California Mastitis Test (CMT) is a simple
cow-side indicator test for subclinical mastitis by somatic cell count estimation
of milk which allows the DNA in those cells to react with the test reagent,
forming a gel (Middleton et al., 2004; Whyte
et al., 2005). The reaction is scored on a scale of 0 (where mixture
remains unchanged) to 3 (solid gel forms) with a score of 2 or 3 being considered
a positive result (Anonymous, 2008). R-mastitest is used
as a indirect test for cows mastitis diagnosis and is based on the principle
of CMT (Sargeant et al., 2001). To detect the
relationship between milk electrical conductivity and its salt and lactose concentration
Mast-O-Test method (a specialized one) is used (Musser et
al., 1998). Other methods described are Portacheck (esterase-catalysed
enzymatic reaction), Fossomatic SCC method, electrical conductivity and pH tests
etc. (Viguier et al., 2009). It is a test which
is not very costly and nontechnical persons or laymen can use it as routine
test for the dairy animals. The implication of test will surely improve management
and prevent the chances of mastitis (Pitkala et al.,
Somatic cell counting: Somatic cells are the epithelial (25%) and leukocytes
(75%) cells secreting through milk. If inflammation i.e., mastitis occur, somatic
cells number also become higher and it is due to migration of more neutrophils
in the milk which is around 90% (Harmon, 1994). Measurement
of somatic cell in the milk samples are referred as Somatic Cell Count (SCC).
There various factors related to occurrence of bovine mastitis like level of
infection (Sharma, 2003); stage of lactation (Dohoo
and Meek, 1982); Age and breed (Beckley and Johnson,
1966; Singh, 2002); parity as well as season and
stress (Skrzypek et al., 2004; Khate
and Yadav, 2010; Smith et al., 1985) Diurnal
variation (White and Rattray, 1965) and milk transport
management (Gonzalo et al., 2003). SCC if is
lower than 1x105 cells mL-1, indicate normal milk and
while during infection it can rise to above 1x106 cells mL-1
(Bytyqi et al., 2010). Thus somatic cell count
can be referred as an indicative test for early diagnosis of mastitis and any
alteration in cell count can be correlated with the presence of potent pathogen.
Bulk Tank Somatic Cell Count (BTSCC) has to be reported on bimonthly basis as
a measure of milk quality. BTSCC less than 2x105 cells mL-1
indicate a minimum level of infection. A series of BTSCCs over 5x105
cells mL-1 indicate a problem with sub clinical or chronic infection
(Schepers et al., 1997).
In vitro culture based diagnosis: In vitro culture regarded
as gold standard test for mastitis (Pyorala, 2003).Swab
of Milk samples can be taken for bacterial, viral and fungal culture in a specific
media and further microbiological/biochemical test applied for specific detection
of bacteria viz. coagulase tests for Staphylococcus (Rajeev
et al., 2009). The main draw back with bacterial culturing is that,
they need specific medium and time consuming. Moreover, the isolation and identification
of viral etiological agent is cumbersome and facilities are also a limitation.
Virus isolation is very tedious from the cases of chronic infections or the
cases with secondary invasions. In contrast fungal pathogens can be isolated
easily in routine microbial media but it is time consuming as fungi can take
weeks together to grow in laboratory media. It is important to note that culture
is capable of detecting only viable cells and thus the clinical relevance of
culture negative results requires further study (Koskinen
et al., 2010).
PCR based diagnosis: Compared with bacterial culture methods, PCR based
detection from directly mastitis milk samples are less time consuming (Amin
et al., 2011). Another main advantage of PCR based assay is based
on DNA and thus no matter of live or dead organisms which is crucial point for
culture based detection but one disadvantages is that PCR detect lower number
of organisms compare to culture methods (Yamagishi et
al., 2007; Madico et al., 2000; Riffon
et al., 2001). Various PCR based tools has been demonstrated for
detecting microbes in mastitis milk samples viz .165 and 165-235 spacer rRNA
genes based touchdown enzyme time-release-PCR for detection and identification
of Chlamydia trachomatis, C. pneumoniae and C. psittaci
(Madico et al., 2000); detection of Staphylococcus
spp., Escherichia coli and Streptococcus spp., (Amin
et al., 2011); a rapid PCR test for identification of Streptococcus
agalactiae by 16S-23S rRNA intergenic spacer region (ISR) amplification
(Jiusheng et al., 2008); Staphylococcus aureus
genotype B (GTB) detection (Syring et al., 2012).
Multiplex PCR based diagnosis: Mastitis is known for the involvement
of multiple etiological agents and many times failure of the treatment is due
to failure of real damage causing organism. Mostly fastidious etiological agents
remain untraced and for all such conditions multiplex PCR can be a boon for
the veterinarian as multiplex PCR can identify multiple pathogens in a single
reaction and at a same time (Phuektes et al., 2001).The
main drawback with multiplex PCR is that there is competition between different
sets of primers for PCR substances like dNTPs and Taq polymerase which
reduces the sensitivity (Amin et al., 2011).Multiplex
PCR also used for diagnosis of multiple pathogens in bovine mastitis milk samples
(Phuektes et al., 2001, Amin
et al., 2011).
Real time PCR based detection: Real-time PCR based assay is an alternate
to in vitro culture for detecting bacterial pathogens in milk samples. Taponen
et al. (2009) detected 11 Staphylococcus spp. (Staphylococci
other than Staphylococcus aureus); 10 Streptococcus uberis; 2
Streptococcus dysgalactiae; 6 Corynebacterium bovis; 3 Staph.
aureus; 1 Escherichia coli; 1 Enterococcus and 1 Arcanobacterium
pyogenes from mastitis milk samples using real time PCR based detection.
However, the presence of costly instruments and consumables make it difficult
to afford particularly in developing countries (Koskinen
et al., 2009; Rajeev et al., 2009).
Circulating miRNA as novel diagnostic tools: MicroRNA/miRNA are 22 nucleotide
long non coding RNA act as transcriptional and post-transcriptional regulation
during expression of genes (Chen and Rajewsky, 2007).
They are complimentary to the 3UTR region of mRNA and thus participate
in gene regulation (Wang et al., 2004). Bioinformatics
analysis revealed that 89 putative miRNA target sites present in 18 mastitis
candidate genes. It was also experimentally proved already that Bta-mir-142*
have target site on SAA3 mastitis candidate gene expressed in bovine mammary
tissues (Gu et al., 2007).
Immune assay: ELISA based diagnostic already developed for S. aureus
(Fox and Adams, 2000), Listeria monocytogenes
(Kalorey et al., 2007), magnetic-bead-based
ELISA for detecting Staphylococci using beads coated with an anti- S. aureus
monoclonal antibody (Yazdankhah et al., 1998).
Immunoassays also used for detecting inflammation-related biomarkers present
in the milk at different stages of sub-clinical mastitis viz. immune assay based
detection of various biomarkers like heptoglobulin (Hiss
et al., 2004), acute phase protein (Eckersall,
Proteomics based detection: Advancement in proteomics tools for examples
two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2D-GE) and mass spectroscopy (MS) (Lippolis
and Reinhardt, 2005; Smolenski et al., 2007)
helped to identify various protein expressed during mastitis. These methods
can be applied to detect the marker proteins from the cases of mastitis particularly
from the acute, subacute and chronic mastitis. It stems largely from the need
of to better characterize the mechanism of the disease and as measure of early
detection and drug efficacy (Boehmer, 2011).
Biochips for detecting mastitis: Biochips are so called
as laboratory-on-a-chip or microfludics having the capacity to use
as a diagnostics (Garcia-Cordero and Ricco, 2008) are
already used for the detection of bovine mastitis viz. Lee
et al. (2008) developed a biochip that integrated DNA amplification
of genes that are specific for seven known mastitis-causing pathogens; a microfluidic
device that incorporated solid-phase extraction and NASBA has been reported
for the identification of low numbers of E. coli (Dimov
et al., 2008) etc.
Biosensors for detecting bovine mastitis: Biosensors are biological
sensors which use bio-receptors like-antibody, nucleic acid, enzymes etc. and
produce a signal after combination with transducers. Nowadays some of the biosensors
already developed for detecting bovine mastitis for examples For example, an
electrobiochemical sensor developed by Pemberton et
al. (2001) and a competitive biosensor assay using surface plasmon resonance
developed to discriminate between sub-clinical mastitic and non-mastitic milk
(Akerstedt et al., 2006).
PREVENTION AND CONTROL
Prevention is better than cure is the phrase that perfectly defines the condition
mastitis, as there is much alterations viz. damage to udder alveoli, mesenchyma,
teat canal, teat itself which cannot be cure flawlessly. These are the damages
occurring as squeal to mastitis. Good hygienic practices and better animal husbandry
way of animal handling can reduce the chances of mastitis (Kumar
et al., 2010). Most of the cases of mastitis are due to the injury
of the udder followed by microbial infection and these can be avoided and even
if these occur accidentally, treatment should be rapid and regular. The portal
of entry of pathogens is mainly through open teat canals and high yielding animals
with soft opening and delayed closing of teat canal during the milking, or the
delayed milking leading to dripping of milk from teats might the route of infection
from soil, contaminated water or litter. These all can be handled by good management
and cleanliness in sheds. Use of antiseptics post milking and at the opening
of teat also reduces the chances of microbial entry, thus considered as an effective
management practice for prevention of contagious mastitis (Olde
Riekerink et al., 2012). Timely and routinely practices of disinfectants
in the shed and paddocks always reduce the incidence of mastitis. Regular screening
of milk and milk samples always reduce the number of infected animals. Commonly
used practices to strain milk, observation of color and consistency improves
the chances of early diagnosis of mastitis. As such no effective vaccine is
available against all possible pathogens due to multiple etiology, however various
vaccines have been attempted against bacterial pathogens with mixed success.
Measures aiming at preventing new cases of mastitis include breeding; fly control;
optimal nutrition; improvement of milking hygiene; avoidance of inter-sucking
among young ones; implementation of post-milking teat disinfection; regular
control of the milking equipments; implementation of milking order; improvement
of bedding material (Shkreta et al., 2004; Calzolari
et al., 1997; Fontaine et al., 2002;
Chang et al., 2008; Nielsen,
2009; Yin et al., 2009; De
Vliegher et al., 2012).
Antibiotic and herbal treatments: During the clinical mastitis cases
the cow is first milked out and then introduced with intramammary infusion of
antibiotics. To control Streptoccocus agalactiae, all four quarters of
positive cows need to be treated with an appropriate commercially marketed intramammary
antibiotic (Erskine, 2001; Sharma
et al., 2007). Again, intramammary treatment with a commercially
available penicillin and novobiocin products give better results against Staphyloccocus
aureus (Owens et al., 1997). Oxytocin treatment
and frequent milking is recommended as an accessory therapy for subacute and
acute coliform mastitis (Leininger et al., 2003).
The treatment of mastitis is mostly based on hit and trial, it makes condition
beyond repairable. Involvement of multiple etiological agents makes it necessary
to perform antibiotic drug sensitivity prior to select the final line of treatment
(Kumar et al., 2010). There are variation of
reports of drug sensitivity patterns of bacterial pathogens from different geographical
region and animal species. Use of two nisins viz. Ambicin (nisin A) with germicidal
activities against Staph. aureus; S. agalactiae; S. uberis;
Klebsiella pneumoniae and E. coli and nisin Z are widely accepted.
A new bacteriocin produced by Lactococcus lactis spp. lactis DPC3147
is also found to be effective against a wide range of gram positive bacteria.
Additionally lactin NK34 (partially purified from lacticin NK34) has
in vivo preventive and therapeutic effects on mouse infection model using
mastitis pathogens (Espeche et al., 2009; Bogni
et al., 2011). Treating sub clinical mastitis with antimicrobials
during lactation is not practiced because of high cost of treatment and poor
efficacy. Herbal therapy is gaining much attention nowadays due to increased
drug resistance and in this regard uses of Terminalia chebula and Terminalia
belerica are quiet significant (Sahay et al.,
2006; Hawari and Al-Dabbas, 2008; Pyorala,
2009; Awandkar et al., 2009; Kumar
et al., 2010; Vashney et al., 2012).
Vaccines and vaccination strategy: Some of the vaccine already in field
trial against control of bovine mastitis include: inactivated, highly encapsulated
Staphylococcus aureus cells; a crude extract of S. aureus exo
polysaccharides; Staphylococcus aureus CP5 whole cell vaccine; inactivated and
unencapsulated Staph. aureus as well as Streptococcus spp. Cells
based vaccine developed for contolling bovine mastitis (Calzolari
et al., 1997; Camussone et al., 2013);
recombinant staphylococcal enterotoxin type C mutant vaccine (Chang
et al., 2008); recombinant Streptococcus uberis GapC or a
chimeric Christie Atkins Munch-Petersen (CAMP) antigen; pauA; live Strep.
uberis 0140J stain and bacterial surface extract (Finch
et al., 1997; Fontaine et al., 2002);
DNA vaccine containing clumping factor A of Staphylococcus aureus and
bovine IL18 (Yin et al., 2009); DNA-Protein
vaccine against Staphylococcus aureus (Shkreta et
al., 2004) and so on.
Quorum sensing: It is the regulation of gene expression in response
to fluctuations in population density of cells based on the principle of release
of auto inducers by bacteria that increase in concentration as a function of
cell density. Several of them have been intensively studied in Staph. aureus
which when interact with specific receptors activate the transcriptional control
system consisting of the genetic elements agr and sar. Similar
studies on Strep. uberis has shown the presence of QS genes such as luxS
and comEA responsible for group behaviour. As these two bacteria
in particular have the ability to grow in infected tissues on biofilms they
develop an innate resistance to almost all therapeutic agents. The difficulties
in treating recurrent infections may thus be related to this pathogen ability
and will ultimately allow better use of quorum sensing to find effective and
appropriate treatment protocols (Kerr and Wellnitz, 2003;
Waters and Bassler, 2005; Novick
and Geisinger, 2008; Moore, 2011).
Disease resistant breeding: With the advancement of molecular/ quantitative
genetics, marker-assisted selection (MAS) are one of the novel ways for selecting
disease resistant breeds for mastitis. Candidate genes can be chosen on the
basis of known relationship between physiological /biochemical processes as
well as production traits so called Quantitative Trait Loci (QTL) (Deb
et al., 2012). Various novel genes has been identified and their
association analysis with SCC revealed mastitis resistant biomarkers viz. TLR2
(Zhang et al., 2009), TLR4 (Deb
et al., 2013), IL8 (Chen et al., 2011),
BRCA1, (Xu et al., 2011), CACNA2D1 (Yuan
et al., 2011) and so on.
CONCLUSION AND FUTURE PERSPECTIVES
In general mastitis is a condition which is at present among the most severe
damage causing conditions to dairy industry. The economic losses due the conditions
are beyond repair and this is due to late and improper diagnosis of main etiological
agent. Complicity of disease is primarily the reason behind the failure of diagnosis.
Although there are many advanced tests available for the diagnosis but the core
issue is early and effective diagnosis as the losses occurs so quickly that
the delay of few hours can be the loss of completer teat or udder. In such conditions
mastitis can be handled best by two means, first one through continuous monitoring
with routine examination of physical condition of udder, milk and examining
the quality of milk. Secondly use of disinfectants and available vaccines in
endemic areas on regular basis. Establishment of protein expression profile
for early disease diagnosis; use of bacteriocins for treatment and disease resistance
breeding aiding in mastitis management are quiet noteworthy. The absence of
single shot vaccination and treatment therapy however still possess the challenge
to veterinarians and research community. Lot of training and awareness is required
in particular to under developed and developing country animal owners to make
them aware of good hygienic practices and routine or regular monitoring of disease.
All control tools must be developed with the ultimate aim to manipulate the
immune status of the animal and to reduce the carrier state. Moreover, establishment
of testing laboratories and skilled and trained laboratory personnels for testing
is another part of the picture.
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