Contrasting animal movement and spatial connectivity networks in shaping transmission pathways of a genetically diverse virus

Researchers VanderWaal, Paploski, Makau and Corzo at the University of Minnesota provide new insights into how PRRSv spreads between farms and the importance of data sharing in this research article published in Preventive Veterinary Medicine.

Highlights

  • The study combined three years of PRRSv genetic data with network analysis to look at the dynamics of between-farm spread of PRRSv.
  • Data from a subset of the MSHMP farms was used and included farm location, animal movements between farms, and any PRRSv sequence recovered those farms.
  • The researchers identified between-farm infection chains and elucidated types of contact that were most associated with PRRSv transmission.
  • Results showed that animal movements, not local area spread, play a dominant role in shaping transmission pathways.
  • Local area spread ( within a 5 km area) also contributed to the PRRSv transmission pathway, though to a much lesser extent than animal movements.

Implications for COVID-19?

Molecular geneticists and epidemiologists perform similar work for the human population, especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Follow this link to learn how researchers trace the routes the virus has traveled across the world in an attempt to find out how quickly and easily SARS-CoV-2 spreads using globally shared data.

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PCR detection of Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae in piglet processing fluids in the event of a clinical respiratory disease outbreak

Dr. Vilalta and collaborators from the University of Minnesota provide new insights for the potential use that processing fluid (PF) may have to detect M. hyopneumoniae in breeding farms by bringing us a clinical case published in VetRecord Case Reports.

Highlights

  • Genetic material of Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae from PF was quantified by real-time PCR.
  • The origin of M. hyopneumoniae genetic material detected in PF needs to be clarified.
  • Processing fluids are a potential sample to detect M. hyopneumoniae in breeding herds.
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Antimicrobial resistance in swine respiratory bacterial pathogens in the USA

On this Monday morning, we would like to share with you this article published in Research in Veterinary Science by PhD-candidate Shivdeep Hayer advised by Dr. Julio Alvarez. The peer-reviewed publication is a summary of antimicrobial resistances (AMR) in swine respiratory isolates between 2006 and 2016.

Highlights

  • AMR data for bacterial swine pathogens associated with Swine Respiratory Disease Complex are lacking
  • AMR data on swine bacterial pathogens collected over 11 years in the U.S.A was analyzed for changes in AMR prevalence
  • AMR in S. suis and P. multocida isolates mostly remained low
  • There were statistically significant changes in AMR in A. suis and H. parasuis
  • Use of surrogate breakpoints can lead to different AMR estimates for certain bacteria
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What are the best diagnostic tools for tracking Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae in swine?

M. hyopneumoniae causes one of the swine industry’s most devastating diseases—a chronic, infectious pneumonia that can cause respiratory distress and lung lesions in pigs. It can also severely slow pig growth. In order for producers and veterinarians to best measure the success of their disease control and elimination efforts, they need to be able to detect the pathogen in live pigs. However, many diagnostic tools can be unreliable. Dr. Maria Pieters’ lab at the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine recently led a study to decipher the reliability of two tools, laryngeal swabs and deep tracheal catheters, in detecting the pathogen.

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What do US producers and veterinarians think about antibiotic-free production?

This recent open-access publication in Frontiers expends beyond the realm of swine production and raises the question raising animals without using antibiotics. Dr. Singer from the University of Minnesota in collaboration with multiple other institutions surveyed US producers and veterinarians to gather their thoughts on the topic.

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