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Research Expands Understanding of Seneca Valley Virus

4 January 2016, at 12:00am

US - The executive director of the Swine health Information Center reports scientists are gaining a better understanding of Seneca Valley Virus, writes Bruce Cochrane.

In response to an increase in Seneca Valley Virus in the US this past summer the Swine Health Information Center developed a list of research priorities related to the infection and circulated a call for research proposals to veterinary diagnostic labs that are doing swine work.

Swine health Information Center executive director Dr Paul Sundberg says projects are now underway at the Universities across the US.

Dr Paul Sundberg-Swine Health Information Center:

Because the virus has historically been so sporadic we didn't know for sure if Seneca Valley by itself could even cause disease.

We were looking at Seneca Valley as a disease agent but the question was, were we missing something that was underlying that infection itself, perhaps something more severe, perhaps something different, perhaps something emerging, but we wanted to make sure that we were focused on the right agent in this clinical outbreak.

Some of the research that's been done by USDA at it's Ag Research Service in Ames, Iowa has conformed koch's postulates in 9 week old pigs.

They've been able to take the current Seneca Valley Virus and expose pigs and cause disease.

So, at least we know that the virus itself can be a disease causing agent and that can help us focus on what we need to know about the rest.

We've also been looking at the effective disinfectants against this virus and the genetic variation of the virus across the country that's been causing infections and then looking at developing better diagnostics.

We don't have good serology tests for the virus so we're looking at making sure that those get developed as well.

Dr Sundberg says, as a result of that work, progress is being made in improving the understanding of Seneca Valley Virus.

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