Researchers from Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine have developed a vaccine effective against a deadly viral disease, most widely known as porcine circovirus associated disease, affecting swine herds in Kansas.
The disease, first recognised in Kansas swine herds in November 2005, is an immunosuppressive condition associated with porcine circovirus type 2 or PCV2 .
Swine producers with infected herds have experienced a death loss of 20 – 40% in finisher pigs, which are pigs between 10 – 20 weeks of age, resulting in devastating economic losses.
The field trial began in 2006, directed by Dritz and Horlen testing a vaccine in commercial development, was conducted on a family-owned swine farm in northeast Kansas and concluded in January with promising results.
The study showed a 50% reduction in mortality of vaccinated pigs compared to non-vaccinated pigs. Mortality was 7% for vaccinated pigs compared to 17% for non-vaccinated pigs. Vaccinated pigs also experienced an increase in growth. On average, they were 20 pounds (9kg) heavier than non-vaccinated pigs of the same age. The vaccine is now commercially available.
“Results from this study suggest that the tested vaccine is effective in controlling the PCV2 associated disease in pigs,” said Rowland, a virologist and associate professor of diagnostic medicine and pathobiology.
“We want to make it clear to swine producers that this vaccine licensed by the US Department of Agriculture’s Centre for Veterinary Biologics is safe and effective,” Rowland said.