New M.Hyo vaccine option for UK Producers

UK - Pig producers in the UK now have access to improved protection for their animals and faster, longer-lasting immunity to Mycoplasma hyopneumonaie (M.hyo) infection, a major contributor to porcine respiratory disease complex (PRDC).
calendar icon 21 February 2003
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Schering-Plough Animal Health Corporation has received approval from local regulators to begin marketing M+PAC®, a vaccine for mycoplasma pneumonia in swine. According to studies conducted in the USA, M+PAC provided 100% seroconversion, which gives veterinarians an excellent tool for monitoring vaccination compliance. It also incorporates a unique adjuvant to accelerate and prolong immunity to respiratory disease in swine.

Kate Richards, swine product manager for the company’s UK subsidiary, says PRDC is a big problem for the UK pig industry, which maintains around 460,000 breeding sows. Given the prevalence of respiratory disease, she says interest in M+PAC has been high.

"Respiratory problems are seen in around 90% of finishing pigs in the UK, and around 60% of those are routinely vaccinated against M. hyo one of the key agents involved in PRDC," she says. "Trials have shown M+PAC delivers more M. hyo antigens than any other vaccine on the market and the long-term antibody response gives protection for over six months. This is an important consideration when finishing pigs to heavier weights."

Another key to the efficacy of M+Pac is its proven ability to protect in the presence of maternal antibodies under laboratory conditions. "Pigs don’t have to be maternal antibody-negative for M+PAC to be effective," Richards says.

The vaccine’s ability to produce a strong cell-mediated immune (CMI) response also contributes to its efficacy.

"CMI is believed to be particularly important in fighting M. hyo infections, so one of the goals of a mycoplasma vaccine is to drive the CMI response," she adds. "In an independent study carried out in the USA, M+PAC had the highest lymphocyte-stimulation index (a measure of CMI) and was statistically higher than two of the three other vaccines used in the trial." Richards says M+PAC contains Emunade, a new adjuvant developed by Schering-Plough Animal Health, which combines aluminum hydroxide with oil-in-water. This ensures the vaccine works quickly, providing immediate antigenic stimulation following vaccination.

"Because the antigen is both inside and on the surface of the Emunade oil droplets, there is a more gradual release of antigen to initiate strong cell immunity and longer lasting protection," she says. "This unique adjuvant is a key component of M+PAC’s superior performance."

She says field studies with M+PAC conducted in America and Asia have shown fewer lung lesions and a notable reduction in coughing scores, as well as improved growth rates of up to 680g per day post vaccination.

Vaccination with M+PAC is a two-dose program. The first 1mL dose is given intramuscularly at seven days or more of age and a second dose 1mL dose is given intramuscularly 14-28 days later. The official launch of M+PAC in the UK took place recently at two separate meetings in the heart of the country’s swine-production areas – Harrogate and Cambridge. Guest speakers were Professor Stanley Done, from the Vet Lab Agency in Weybridge; David Burch, an independent pig consultant from Otagon Services Ltd in Old Windsor; and Dr. Robyn Fleck, Manager, Swine Technical Services, with Schering-Plough Animal Health in the United States.

For further information about M+Pac®, please contact Kate Richards, Schering-Plough Animal Health, Breakspear Road South, Harefield, Uxbridge, United Kingdom. Telephone 01895 626248, email

Source: Joseph Feeks, PR Works - 21st February 2003
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