UK Pig Disease Quarterly Surveillance Report (to December 2005)

By Veterinary Laboratories Agency - This report monitors trends in the major endemic pig diseases and utilises the farmfile and VIDA (Veterinary Investigation Disease Analysis) databases. The report is compiled using disease data gathered by the network of 15 VLA regional laboratories which carry out disease investigation in the field.
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Quarterly Surveillance Report Pigs: Vol.9 No.4
October - December 2005 - Published Feb 2006







Highlights: Fourth Quarter 2005

  • Analysis of submissions without a diagnosis did not indicate the emergence of a novel pig disease during 2005.

  • A few incidents of swine dysentery were of concern. In part because commercial herds have rarely encountered the disease in recent years, but mainly because one incident involved extended antimicrobial resistance.

  • PCV2-associated diseases continue to underlie much of the disease occurring in pigs from weaning to slaughter weight. PMWS within the first few weeks after weaning is reportedly less commonly seen, whereas disease in older pigs has a major economic impact on some units.


The GB DAPP (GB Deadweight Average Pig Price) gradually declined further to remain below or occasionally just above 102p/kg dw for most of the quarter. Further details on DAPP and other pig industry topics are available on the BPEX website:


No suspect incidents of swine fever or Aujeszky’s disease were reported that required statutory laboratory investigations.


No suspect incidents involving poisoning of pigs were reported.


Salmonella isolates
Salmonella enterica enterica Typhimurium remains the predominant salmonella serovar isolated from pigs, while Derby remains the second most prevalent with occasional isolations of other serovars. As in previous quarters, Typhimurium definitive type (DT) U288 and DT 193 were most frequently isolated in the fourth quarter. Over the whole year, most Typhimurium isolations occurred in the first quarter with consistently fewer isolations in each subsequent quarter.

The annual diagnostic rate for salmonellosis remained similar to previous years – see histogram, which shows VIDA incidents of porcine salmonellosis as a percentage of diagnosable submissions 1999-2005. The slight decline in diagnoses in recent years is not statistically significant though may partly relate to reduced diagnoses of postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS):

Incidents of salmonellosis included one in which the submitted ten-week-old outdoor grower pig showed multifocal ulcerative necrosis affecting the entire large intestine. Typhimurium DT) 193 was isolated.

Zoonoses Action Plan (ZAP)

ZAP advisory visits were maintained (see, although the voluntary take up of these visits was less than expected. In total, 43 visits have taken place so far and 33% of total samples collected during these visits yielded salmonellas. Typhimurium DT U288 was the commonest isolate followed by DT 193 and DT U302. Inadequate cleansing and disinfection of pig accommodation, substandard management of sick pigs, and lack of control of rodents were the three areas identified as the likely main sources of persistent salmonella-exposure.


Specimens from 68 pig (representing reproductive diseases and lameness cases) and hare submissions were cultured for brucellas during 2005 under the surveillance initiative to provide evidence that pig herds remain free of Brucella suis; an organism that has never been isolated from pigs or hares in the UK. Brucellas were not isolated.


Streptococcus suis isolates
No reports were received of human infections. Sixteen Streptococcus suis isolates were serotyped this quarter as tabulated. Not all isolates represent disease incidents. Notable is the absence of serotype 14 for the first year since the first VLA record in 1995.

Further Information

To read the full 7 page pdf report Click Here

Source: Veterinary Laboratories Agency (VLA) - February 2006

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