Research into Reducing the Spread of Pig Viruses in Herds

CANADA - Researchers working on behalf of Swine Innovation Porc are developing new tools to assist pork producers in preventing Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome from infecting pig herds, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 29 December 2014
clock icon 3 minute read

Researchers with the University of Montreal and the University of Guelph, working on behalf of Swine Innovation Porc, have kicked off a four-year programme aimed at gaining a better understanding of the various strains of PRRS virus in an effort to develop methods for identifying the most likely source of contamination and help producers reduce the risk of spread.

Dr Sylvie D'Allaire, a professor in swine health management with the University of Montréal, says because the PRRS virus mutates rapidly and can be spread in so many ways, it is particularly challenging.

Dr Sylvie D'Allaire - University of Montreal:

The overall objective is really to better understand the ecology and epidemiology but more specifically we would like to follow the evolution of the virus in time and space, and secondly we would like to develop a rigorous method of tracking how the virus spreads among farms, and then to determine among all the reasons what is the most likely source of herd contamination.

This part would really help producers in decision making.

Very often as veterinarians we are asked by producers where should I start if I want to prevent the introduction of virus?

Where should I invest first and where would it be more efficient or more cost effective, and we don't have at this time all the information for that, so the result of this project will certainly help to prioritise their action for better control.

Dr D'Allaire says results of this work will be circulated as they become available.

Further Reading

Find out more information on Porcine Reproductive & Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) by clicking here.

Charlotte Rowney

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