Effect of PCV-2 Vaccination on Cytokines Gene Expression Profile in Wild Boar Peripheral Blood Mononuclear Cells after Stimulation with Mycobacteria Antigens

Transboundary and Emerging Diseases


Wild boar (Sus scrofa) is a common wild ungulate known as the most important reservoir of tuberculosis (TB) in Spain. The severity of TB lesions in this species and the high prevalence of porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV-2) have been related. PCV-2 is ubiquitous in swine populations, being usual for the free-living ones the contact with this agent. Recent studies found a correlation between a decrease of generalised TB prevalence in wild boar populations and the PCV-2-vaccination. The aim of this study was to find out if PCV-2 vaccination modulates the gene expression of cytokines from immune cells after its exposition with mycobacterial antigens using an in vitro methodology. A total of 46 wild boars from a PCV-2 infection endemic area were blood-sampled before and after the PCV-2 vaccination of 22 of them. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) were obtained and isolated from these samples. Aliquots of the cells were in vitro cultured and respectively stimulated with PPDa, PPDb, and a mitogen. A complete analysis of the gene expression of cytokines from the cultured PBMC was carried out. Also, Mycobacterium bovis and PCV-2 contacts were revealed by ELISA and/or qPCR. The results demonstrated that the animals which have had contact with PCV-2 and had been vaccinated, manifested a significant decrease in gene expression of proinflammatory cytokines, like interleukin 1 beta, interleukin 6, and tumour necrosis factor-alpha, possibly related with the severity of TB lesions, and also a significant decrease of interleukin 10, a key cytokine. In conclusion, in case of possible infection or contact events with the virus, PCV-2 vaccination could be an effective measure to reduce the TB severity in wild boar populations, which could decrease the intra and interspecies transmission of TB.

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