Skip to main content
SLU publication database (SLUpub)

Research article2022Peer reviewedOpen access

Occurrence of CAE and CLA in Swedish Dairy Goats and Comparison of Serum and Milk as Sampling Material

Persson, Ylva; Andersson, Ellen; Frossling, Jenny; Wensman, Jonas Johansson


Caprine arthritis encephalitis (CAE) and caseous lymphadenitis (CLA) are two infectious diseases affecting goat welfare and production throughout the world. There are no current data regarding their prevalence in Sweden, and the aim of this pilot study was therefore to estimate the occurrence in Swedish milk-producing goats, but also to assess the agreement between milk and sera as sample material for diagnosis and to investigate the association between the somatic cell count (SCC) in bulk milk and the occurrence of CAE and CLA. Serum, individual milk, and bulk-tank milk samples were collected from 214 dairy goats in 10 herds. All samples were analysed by ELISA to detect antibodies for CAE and CLA, and 14.6% of the goats were seropositive for CAE, whereas 19.3% of the goats were seropositive for CLA. The agreement between individual milk and serum samples was over 90% for both diseases and individual milk samples can therefore be considered as an alternative material for analysis in a future eradication programme. Based on the limited number of samples, there was also a significant correlation between bulk-milk test results and within-herd seroprevalence for both CAE and CLA. The SCC in bulk-milk samples was measured using a DeLaval cell counter. The medium SCC was 639,000 cells/mL and no association between SCC and CAE or CLA could be found. The results indicate that CAE and CLA are two common diseases in Swedish goat herds, but further studies based on a larger number of herds are needed to draw conclusions about the national prevalence. The results also indicate that milk can be used as a more cost-effective sampling media for diagnosing CAE and CLA compared to serology, which is the standard procedure today. Hopefully, the results can support the establishment of a successful programme to control the diseases, with the ambition to eradicate CAE and CLA in Sweden.


small ruminant lentivirus; abscesses; pseudotuberculosis

Published in

2022, Volume: 3, number: 1, pages: 190-198
Publisher: MDPI