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Zoetis launches Europe's first dual PCV2 genotype pig vaccine

2 June 2021, at 12:30am

A new vaccine has been launched in Europe for pigs that will help tackle the ever-mutating porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2). Over the past five to 10 years, the European swine industry has seen a significant dominance shift in its PCV2 strains from PCV2a to PCV2b and PCV2d now being dominant.

CircoMax Myco is the first vaccine registered in Europe that includes two genotypes of PCV2 – PCV2a and PCV2b - combined with a pure Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae (M. hyo) antigen. Because of this, CircoMax Myco offers broader antigenic coverage and the longest combined protection for PCV2 and M. hyo. Its ready-to-use formulation is administered as a single 2 ml dose intramuscularly in piglets from three weeks of age and provides at least 23 weeks duration of immunity against both PCV2 and M. hyo. The PCV2 protection has been demonstrated to provide coverage against PCV2a, PCV2b and PCV2d.

“PCV2 is the most rapidly mutating of all single stranded DNA viruses, so it has a high mutation rate and a high recombination rate – about 33% of field strains are recombinants. The second genotype provides a broader antigenic base resulting in broader coverage against the current field strains,” said Laura Hancox, National Veterinary Manager with the Zoetis Pig Team in the UK.

“Zoetis uses a technology from Epivax Inc. that can compare the genetic sequences of PCV2 vaccine strains and field strains to predict how well a vaccine will protect against strains on farm. This technology has been applied to strains from across the world, and our studies show that CircoMax Myco gives on average 36% increased antigenic cross-protection against European strains compared to competitor PCV2a vaccines.”

PCV2 remains endemic

Even though the majority of the pig population has been vaccinated for PCV2, the virus is still endemic in Europe. The most common form of PCV2 infection is subclinical.

“Subclinically infected pigs can have reduced growth rates and increased susceptibility to other co-infections,” she noted. “A vaccine with broader antigenic content may be better equipped to protect against not only clinical disease but also subclinical infection. Subclinical PCV2 disease often goes undetected and undiagnosed, but the cost is quite significant to the industry. The cost of PCV2 subclinical infection is estimated to be £82.30 per pig fatality and £8.10 per pig which survives until slaughter.”

An accepted mortality rate and growth rate always exist on the farm that becomes the norm. However, subclinical disease on a farm can impact many areas of pig health and welfare, and most don’t realize the effect it’s having across the operation because of the accepted norms. When management tools are put in place to reduce subclinical disease, farmers can see unexpected improvements in mortality, growth rates and other outcome measurements.

Trusted M. hyo protection

Alongside protection for both PCV2a, PCV2b and PCV2d, CircoMax Myco includes Zoetis’ trusted Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae antigen, which is a pure, cell-free M. hyo antigen for targeted immune response. On its own, M. hyo can be a very costly respiratory disease and is a core pathogen in porcine respiratory disease complex (PRDC).

The vaccine is also formulated with the antigen MetaStim® which provides a robust cell-mediated immune response. It's shown to be safe in field trials at varying doses with minimal injection site reactions and minimal post-vaccination depression in piglets. The vaccine also contains no mineral oil, reducing human safety issues compared to some competitors.

“CircoMax Myco is all about staying ahead of disease threats – an evolving PCV2 virus, subclinical infections, recombinations,” said Hancox. “With this vaccine’s broader antigen content, there's better opportunity to stay one step ahead of an ever-changing PCV2 virus in the future.”

CircoMax Myco® contains inactivated recombinant chimeric porcine circovirus type 1 containing the porcine circovirus type 2a open reading frame 2 (ORF2) protein, inactivated recombinant chimeric porcine circovirus type 1 containing the porcine circovirus type 2b (ORF2) protein and inactivated Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae, strain P-5722-3. POM-V Use medicines responsibly (www.noah.co.uk/responsible). Further information can be obtained from the product SPC or from Zoetis UK Limited, 1st Floor, Birchwood Building, Springfield Drive, Leatherhead, Surrey, KT22 7LP. www.zoetis.co.uk Customer Support: 0845 300 8034. Date of preparation April 2021. MM-14629