We have isolated from calf serum a protein with an apparent M, of 120,000. The protein was detected by using antibodies against major acute-phase protein in pigs with acute inflammation. The amino acid sequence of an internal fragment revealed that this protein is the bovine counterpart of ITIH4, the heavy chain 4 of the inter-alpha-trypsin inhibitor family. The response of this protein in the sera was determined for animals during experimental bacterial and viral infections. In the bacterial model, animals were inoculated with a mixture of Actinomyces pyogenes, Fusobacterium necrophorum, and Peptostreptococcus indolicus to induce an acute-phase reaction. All animals developed moderate to severe clinical mastitis and exhibited remarkable increases in ITIH4 concentration in serum (from 3 to 12 times the initial values, peaking at 48 to 72 h after infection) that correlated with the severity of the disease. Animals with experimental infections with bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) also showed increases in ITIH4 concentration (from two- to fivefold), which peaked at around 7 to 8 days after inoculation. Generally, no response was seen after a second infection of the same animals with the virus. Because of the significant induction of the protein in the animals in the mastitis and BRSV infection models, we can conclude that ITIH4 is a new positive acute-phase protein in cattle.