Porcine respiratory coronavirus (PRCV)

calendar icon 8 November 2018
clock icon 6 minute read

Background and history

PRCV first appeared in pigs in the 1980s in Europe. It is related to but distinct from transmissable gastroenteritis virus (TGE), which is another coronavirus.

PRCV is respiratory-spread and believed to travel long distances, and because of this, it is extremely difficult to maintain herds free from it. Very few countries have not been exposed.

Clinically, it is almost non-pathogenic and field experiences have shown that herds exposed for the first time have few (if any) signs of disease.

It has been suggested however that it may have an effect on lung tissue when other respiratory disease complexes.

PRCV does however cross react with the serological test for TGE and it can therefore confuse diagnosis.

A differential test is available.

Clinical signs


  • Usually no symptoms.
  • In the presence of other respiratory agents coughing may be associated.


  • A transient cough but no other signs.

Weaners and growers

  • Herds exposed for the first time have few if any signs of disease.
  • A transient coughing lasting only a few hours.


Blood tests completed in a diagnostic laboratory capable of carrying out the differential test.


  • Field observations indicate the virus is spread for long distances on the wind.
  • PRCV is respiratory spread.


  • National importation programmes - Individual countries which are free from this infection and TGE will only import pigs that are sero-negative for TGE and PRCV.
  • No on-farm precautions recommended.

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