Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences



Committee Director

James C. Johnson

Committee Member

Lloyd Wolfinbarger, Jr.

Committee Member

Thomas Sitz

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.B46 A77


Duck plague is a hemorrhagic, necrotic disease found exclusively in the order Anseriformes, family Anatidae (ducks, geese, swans). The etiologic agent has been reported to be a herpes-like virus. The Holland strain of duck plague was found to induce cytopathic effects in cell culture (perinuclear vacuolation followed by lysis). A simple reproducible plaque assay for quantitating the virus was developed. Under conditions of the plaque assay, one-hit kinetics were observed. The host range of duck plague virus in cell culture was found to include the order Galliformes, family Phasianidae (pheasants, quails and partridges). Duck plague virus-induced cell culture cytopathic effects were inhibited by phosphonoacetic acid. High concentrations of phosphonoacetic acid did not visably affect duck embryo fibroblast morphology or multiplication. Opaque plaques resulted following the delayed addition of phosphonoacetic acid to infected cultures. It is speculated that opaque plaques were the result of an aborted viral infection.


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