Testing of oral fluids in pigs could improve ASF monitoring

The Swine Health Information Center is exploring the use of oral fluids as a new tool to detect and manage African swine fever.
calendar icon 6 February 2020
clock icon 3 minute read

In an effort to assist the Vietnamese pork sector in dealing with African swine fever (ASF) and to gather information to help the North American pork sector defend against the introduction of the disease and be prepared in the event of an outbreak, the Swine Health Information Center is coordinating a multi pronged Asian African swine fever collaboration. Swine Health Information Center Executive Director Dr Paul Sundberg says one key aspect of the initiative is monitoring.

"We are studying right now the use of oral fluids to be able to monitor for African swine fever infections.

"Prior to this the monitoring of samples that we can use in diagnostic labs or for programmes is primarily whole blood.

"If there are mortalities, there are tissues that can be analysed for ASF but, as far as antemortem or live animal monitoring, really the only thing we could use right now is whole blood.

"We're testing out oral fluids in Vietnam to see if we can reliably use oral fluids as a different monitoring and testing tool.

"That would be a great advantage and a great advance to our ability to detect ASF but especially to be able to manage it should it get into the US."

Detailed information on efforts to guard against the introduction of African swine fever into North America and to be prepared in the event an outbreak does occur can be found on the Swine Health Information Center web site at SwineHealth.org.

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