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New Light Shed on Swine Influenza Infection Patterns

by 5m Editor
18 November 2013, at 6:21am

CANADA - Data collected through the Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network has shed new light on the patterns of influenza infection within Canadian swine herds, writes Bruce Cochrane.

Keeping Disease Out of Your Farm: The Role of the Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network will be discussed next week in Saskatoon as part of Saskatchewan Pork Industry Symposium 2013.

CSHIN, an initiative of the Canadian Swine Health Board, allows swine veterinarians across Canada to share information on developing swine disease trends in their regions.

Dr Chris Byra, the manager of the Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network reports data discussed by CSHIN's swine specialist panel during its 30 October quarterly teleconference indicates swine influenza may less seasonal than previously believed.

Dr Chris Byra - Canadian Swine Health Intelligence Network

At this meeting we had the first opportunity to use a year's worth of data from the data network.

Not only do we have the clinical impressions of veterinarians from that time period but also we have data that we could analyze to see whether it corroborated the impressions.

We found that, for instance, swine influenza no longer seems to have a s much of a seasonal variation as we would normally see.

Usually we see very high levels in November and then again in January and then sometimes a bit of a bump in late May.

That's been documented in Ontario recently where they've reviewed retrospective data.

What we saw here was that there seems to be relatively steady levels throughout the year.

It probably increases in the fall but it's not nearly as obvious as it was assumed to be.

Dr Byra acknowledges at this point the findings are just an observation and need to be verified with data from laboratories as well.

He says, if that's the case, there are farms that vaccinate on a seasonal basis to protect their animals through the winter when in fact now maybe they should be doing it year round.