Podcast: M. hyo break in naïve herd

16-08-2022 | |
Podcast: M. hyo break in naïve herd

In collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim, Pig Progress introduces the 4th episode of the 3rd season of this well-known podcast series, ‘Meet the Expert’. This episode focuses on Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae, the causative agent for enzootic pneumonia in pigs, with international consultant, Dr Tom Gillespie.

Gillespie was raised on a livestock and grain farm in Indiana and grew up with a passion to get into veterinary school. In 1991 he began his own practice. Today, he has retired from day-to-day practice and enjoys working on specific projects.

Controlling M. hyo bacteria

M. hyo is a bacteria found predominantly in the lungs and nasal cavities of pigs. For many years this very slow-transmitting disease was tolerated, but as Dr Gillespie notes, this led us to an endemic situation as the animals continued to live and the bacteria was under control with a little antibiotic treatment and vaccination. But, it does cost the farmer money. “If we can eliminate it completely in the sow herd, then we have an improved improvement performance downstream in the grower-finishers,” says Gillespie.

Elimination of Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae

“Stop entering replacement gilts,” says Gillespie. “Day zero becomes the start of the elimination programme, but prior to that we allow and promote natural infection.” He adds that we know that with some pathogens, the animals will eliminate that infection if we give it enough time, and with Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae, it is roughly 250 days.”

Throughout this podcast, Gillespie also goes into detail about a trial farm with a naïve herd, lessons learnt and interesting findings. He ends the podcast noting that M. hyo is a practitioners organism.


Natalie Berkhout Freelance journalist
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