Histological Lesions and Replication Sites of PCV3 in Naturally-Infected Pigs

A team of researchers led by Dr. Fabio Vannucci investigated the lesions associated with a natural infection by Porcine Circovirus 3. They focused their study on histological lesions as well as replication sites to get a better understanding of this virus’ pathology. The article is available in open access on the journal’s website.

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Are mosquitoes a risk for ASF?

This is our Friday rubric: every week a new Science Page from the Bob Morrison’s Swine Health Monitoring Project. The previous editions of the science page are available on our website.

This week, the MSHMP tip summarized a publication by Qin et al. regarding the risk of mosquitoes carrying and transmitting African Swine Fever virus.

Key Points

  • African swine fever (ASF) continues to pose a large risk in the absence of safe and effective ASF vaccines
  • There is evidence indicating that mosquitos may be a possible ASF vector 
  • Mosquitos captured at ASF positive farms had DNA extracted and tested for ASF with no positive results
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Temporal stability of swine movement networks in the U.S.

Efficient and highly effective control of infectious diseases can be achieved by targeting interventions towards farms that are highly connected “super-spreaders” in animal movement networks. However, from an implementation standpoint, it is unclear how much movement data is required to gain an accurate picture of farm connectivity, nor how quickly movement networks change over time. For example, can movement data from last year be used to identify potential super-spreaders this year? How often do such analyses need to be updated? Answering these questions is key to moving from science to practice in terms of successful deployment of network-based targeted control strategies in swine production systems. In this study, Dr Dennis Makau and the VanderWaal lab aim to answer these questions for production systems in the United States.

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Impact of Enrichment on the Behavior of Sows Housed in Groups

Drs. Ventura and Zhitnitskiy, faculty members in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Natural Resources and the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Minnesota recently published a new article regarding the influence of point-source enrichment on the behavior of gestating sows housed in groups. The article is available in open-access on the Frontiers in Animal Science website.

Key Points

  • Most common observed behaviors were sows being inactive (73%), followed by sham-chewing (16%). Enrichment use made up only 1% of observations.
  • Number of observed interactions with enrichment decreased sharply on the second day.
  • Low-parity sows, moderately-lame sows, and sham-chewing sows interacted more with the enrichment.
  • No increase in adverse effects (agonistic behaviors, sham-chewing) was observed.
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Streptococcus suis: predicting pathogenicity with virulence-associated genes?

A recent publication in Porcine Health Management by April Estrada, from the Gebhart lab at the University of Minnesota, proposes new virulence-associated genes to predict the pathogenicity of US Streptococcus suis. This project continues her previous work on the classification of US S. suis strains based on pathotypes.

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