IN the 15 years since the last In Practice article on bovine virus diarrhoea virus (BVDV) (Brownlie 1985), there has been an explosion in the understanding of the molecular mechanisms of viral replication and mutation, especially those related to biotypic variation. Hand in hand has come a greater understanding of the importance of BVDV as a primary pathogen of cattle, particularly as a cause of reproductive loss. A BVDV vaccine is now available in the UK, giving better prospects for protection against infection. However, for the veterinary clinician, the strategic decisions regarding diagnosis, control and vaccination continue to pose difficult dilemmas and it is on these issues that this article focuses.
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