New Vaccine Offers Protection Against PMWS

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2099. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.
calendar icon 28 March 2006
clock icon 3 minute read

Farm-Scape, Episode 2099

The Canadian introduction of the first of a number of new vaccines designed to protect against PMWS is offering hope to those farms facing a heightened risk of infection.

Post-weaning Multisystemic Wasting Syndrome, a relatively new condition which was first characterized in Western Canada just over a decade ago and which is now present worldwide, only affects pigs.

Symptoms typically occur between about six and 15 weeks of age, when the pig enters the nursery or early grower phase and clinical signs may include weight loss, difficulty breathing, enlargement of the lymph nodes or jaundice.

The most recent outbreak, reported in Quebec and Ontario is resulting in estimated loses ranging from 10 to 12 percent and as high as 50 percent.

Merial was recently granted a special import permit clearing the way for the distribution in Canada of Circovac and several other companies are close to releasing their own vaccines.

Merial global technical serves director Dr. Francois Joisel says Circovac is administered to the sow which then passes the protection to her offspring.

"This is a sow and gilt vaccine which is intended to be used before farrowing to increase passive immunity for the piglets.

We have decided to choose the sow option for this vaccine because, first of all, contamination of the piglet occurs very early in the life.

Second it's really necessary not to immunostimulate the piglets early in life because it may trigger PMWS so the sow option appeared to be the best option."

Dr. Joisel says the vaccine has been in use in France and Germany for the past year and a half and more than 350 thousand sows have been vaccinated with particularly encouraging results.

He says the first shipment was received in Canada about two weeks ago and supplies should be readily available.

For more information, visit our PMWS Technical Zone

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

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