Mastitis is one of the costliest health problems of dairy cattle and is a major source of economic loss to dairy farmers. Somatic cell count (SCC) in milk is one of the best indicators of udder health status both in pathogenic and non-pathogenic cases.
It results in a significant reduction in milk yield, due to damage of milk producing tissues in the udder. The somatic cell count is the number of cells present in milk (body cells as distinguished from invading bacterial cells). It is used as an indicator of udder infection. Somatic cell counts higher than 283,000 cells/ ml indicate the presence of mastitis (Reneau, 1986).