The development of an Elisa for measuring the potency of vaccines containing Clostridium chauvoei antigens

Crichton, R.; Solomon, J.; Barton, A.M.

Biologicals 18(1): 49-54


Current standards (British Pharmacopeia (Veterinary) 1985) for vaccines containing Clostridium chauvoei require a potency test based on a challenge assay in guinea-pigs. Animal welfare and cost considerations favour the development of alternatives. Most veterinary clostridial vaccines are multi component, requiring assays in rabbits to test the potency of components other than C. chauvoei. We describe the application of an ELISA to measure the response to C. chauvoei vaccines in rabbits. The antigen is a sonicated extract of C. chauvoei strain CH4, intended to include a mixture of cellular and soluble antigens. The rabbit response to more than 70 vaccines containing C. chauvoei has been assessed against a reference serum which has been assigned an arbitrary potency of 100 units ml-1. The antibody titres of rabbit sera have been compared with the results of guinea-pig challenge potency tests on the same vaccines. The pass level in the guinea-pig potency test is equivalent to a rabbit ELISA titre of 50 units ml-1.