Mastitis is an inflammatory condition of the udder that is highly prevalent in cows on New Zealand dairy farms. It results in reduced production, increased treatment costs and lower profitability (Petrovski et al.,2006). An elevated somatic cell count (SCC) in the milk, mainly due to recruitment of immune cells to the site of infection, is the most widely accepted standard for diagnosis of subclinical infection whereas bacteriological culturing is typically used for identification of the causative pathogen from clinical cases (Moyes et al.,2009; Schukken et al.,2003). At present, both tests require laboratory analysis and are not routinely performed on individual cows throughout lactation.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 70, Palmerston North, 243-245, 2010
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