The inhibitory receptor programmed death-1 (PD-1) and its ligand, programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) are involved in immune evasion mechanisms for several pathogens causing chronic infections. Blockade of the PD-1/PD-L1 pathway restores anti-virus immune responses, with concomitant reduction in viral load. To investigate the roles of bovine PD-1 and PD-L1, we analyzed the expression levels of PD-1 and PD-L1 in bovine leukemia virus (BLV) infection. The proportion of PD-L1 positive cells, especially among B cells, was upregulated in cattle with the late stage of the disease compared to cattle at the aleukemic infection stage or uninfected cattle. The proportion of PD-L1 positive cells correlated positively with prediction markers for the progression of the disease such as leukocyte number, virus load and virus titer whilst on the contrary, it inversely correlated with the degree of interferon-gamma expression. Blockade of the PD-1/PD-L1 pathway in vitro by specific antibodies upregulated the production of interleukin-2 and interferon-gamma, and correspondingly, downregulated the BLV provirus load and the proportion of BLV-gp51 expressing cells. These data suggest that PD-1/PD-L1 pathway induce immunoinhibition in disease progressed cattle during chronic BLV infection. Therefore, PD-L1 would be a potential target for developing immunotherapies against BLV infection.