Don't let swine influenza be complicated

The influenza A virus in swine (IAV-S) is always evolving, and there aren’t always clinical signs.
calendar icon 12 January 2018
clock icon 4 minute read

H1N1 Gamma, H1N2 Delta-1, H3N2 Cluster-IV-A and H3N2 Cluster-IV-B are some of the most prevalent strains of influenza A virus in swine (IAV-S) that can impact U.S. farms today.

The name of the strains isn’t the only thing about IAV-S that can be complicated. But, if you can outsmart the virus before temperatures cool and the risk for IAV-S outbreaks increases, this can help make managing IAV-S simple.Understand the following so you don’t make IAV-S management complicated:

It’s an evolving virus. Once a single, stable H1N1 subtype, IAV-S is genetically changing and transmitting into multiple subtypes at a rapidly increasing pace. Zoetis works closely with universities and veterinary diagnostic laboratories to evaluate which strains are impacting the industry now and those that may become problematic in the future. The video linked above can help you better understand the threat you’re facing today and how to help control the virus.

Herds with pre-existing immunity can be impacted. Because the influenza virus has evolved into new strains, this means the virus can spread rapidly, even through herds with pre-existing immunity.[1] Because of the rapid pace of IAV-S genetic changes and transmission, use a vaccine, such as FluSure XP®, that offers the broadest coverage and has been updated to be effective against the most relevant IAV-S subtypes and clusters currently circulating in swine.

Disease may always be present. Regardless of farm type, age of pigs or time of year, disease can be present in pigs, even when there are no clinical signs.[2] Suckling pigs have been shown to harbor IAV-S and can carry it to the nursery after weaning.[3] Addressing influenza at the top of the production system can help produce negative pigs at weaning and help minimize transmission.[3]

It gets costly. The ever-shifting IAV-S virus continues to cause respiratory problems and decrease profitability in U.S. swine herds. An influenza outbreak can cost producers more than $10 per pig in medication costs and performance losses.[4] A herd veterinarian can help determine the best vaccination strategy to help protect against potential losses from an outbreak. A change to a whole herd vaccination strategy with FluSure XP helped lead to an approximate 18 to 1 return on investment for this operation in Iowa.[5]

IAV-S can be complicated, but managing it doesn’t have to be. In our next article, we’ll offer some quick tips to help ensure you have broad and relevant coverage against IAV-S when you need it (keep in mind that a vaccine that helps protect against one strain does not always cross-protect against others). In the meantime, you can learn more about helping protect against the most common virus strains from your veterinarian, a Zoetis representative or at

About Zoetis

Zoetis is the leading animal health company, dedicated to supporting its customers and their businesses. Building on more than 60 years of experience in animal health, Zoetis discovers, develops, manufactures and markets veterinary vaccines and medicines, complemented by diagnostic products, genetic tests, biodevices and a range of services. Zoetis serves veterinarians, livestock producers and people who raise and care for farm and companion animals with sales of its products in more than 100 countries. In 2016, the company generated annual revenue of $4.9 billion with approximately 9,000 employees. For more information, visit


1 Sandbulte MR, Spickler AR, Zaabel PK, Roth JA. Optimal use of vaccines for control of influenza A virus in swine. Vaccines. 2015;3(1):22-73.
2 Corzo C, Gramer M, Lowe J, Webby R. Swine influenza active surveillance in the United States, in Proceedings. 6th Inter Symp Emerg Re-emerg Pig Dis 2011;Abstract 30.
3 Torremorell M. What should we do about flu?, in Proceedings. Allen D. Leman Swine Conf 2011;27-32
4 Donovan, T. Influenza isolate selection methodology for timely autogenous vaccine use, in Proceedings. Allen D. Leman Swine Conf 2008;557-562.
5 Data on file, Study Report No. OR-2011-10-27, Zoetis Inc.

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