Impact of bovine herpesvirus 4 (BoHV-4) on reproduction.
Bovine herpesvirus 4 (BoHV-4) is increasingly considered as responsible for various reproductive troubles. This virus infects blood mononuclear cells and displays a specific tropism for vascular endothelia, mammary tissue, endometrium and foetal tissues. Viral multiplication can be reactivated by corticosteroids or stress, both factors present at calving. BoHV-4 has been isolated in a large variety of clinical cases, primarily metritis, vaginitis and mastitis, but also endometritis, abortion and orchitis. Its impact on reproductive performance has been suggested by several epidemiological studies: seroprevalence against BoHV-4 is higher in aborted females and in repeat breeders. Nevertheless, its intrinsic pathogenic power seems low, symptoms developing only when BoHV-4 cooperates with bacteria: within the uterus or mammary gland. BoHV-4 is rather currently considered as a cofactor for the development of an inflammatory reaction initiated by bacteria.