Research on next-generation PRRS vaccine
South Dakota State University research is working on
an updated PRRS vaccine to help swine producers around the
"We are trying to make the next generation of the PRRS vaccine," research
assistant professor Ying Fang said. "It will be a genetically engineered PRSSV
The disease has caused huge economic losses to the swine
industry worldwide since with recent costs in the US alone estimated to be at
least $560 million annually
Much of SDSU's work with PRRS is through the Center for Infectious Disease
Research and Vaccinology, formed in 2004 as one of the governor's 2010 research
Fang, a molecular biologist who led a US team of researchers to
investigate a PRRS outbreak in China in December 2007, said SDSU is at the
forefront of research to update the vaccine. One focus of SDSU research is on
how the PRRS virus sabotages the animal's defence systems.
"We want to
identify which genes are responsible for shutting down the host's protective
immunity," she said, adding that the information will help build a better
vaccine against PRRS.
One technique the research team is using employs
"reverse genetics." That is, the team has cloned the virus and is using that
clone to manipulate the viral genomes.
PRRS continues to the most economically significant disease of swine
worldwide, thus indicating the need for vaccines will continue, Fang said.
â€¢ Center for Infectious
Disease Research and Vaccinology
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