Confused about Streptococcus zooepidemicus?

Dr. Matheus Costa wrote a couple of articles regarding this new swine pathogen for the online information platform Farmscape.

Image by Anemone123 from Pixabay

This first one summarizes what is know about the pathogen so far. You may read the article on the website or even listen to Dr. Costa’s interview.

A second article focuses on biosecurity measures that should be implemented to prevent the spread of the pathogen. Again you may read the article or listen to the interview.

Lastly, Dr. Costa published a summary of the cases so far, shared on this blog a few months back and still available if you would like to read it again.

Frequency and origin of live imports of breeding-stock pigs to the United States

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, we are sharing a report from the MSHMP team in collaboration with the Swine Health Information Center regarding the origin of the pigs that are imported for breeding purposes.

Key Points

  • International live pig transport is a possible route for disease entry into the U.S.
  • The first step in assessing this risk is to categorize and analyze breeding stock import data
  • Small numbers of imported breeding pigs have come from a variety of countries, but the majority come from Canada
Continue reading “Frequency and origin of live imports of breeding-stock pigs to the United States”

Evaluation of Efficacy of Ultraviolet Germicidal Chambers in Swine Farms

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, Dr. Torremorell shares the results of a project funded by the Swine Disease Eradication Center on ultraviolet germicidal Chambers in swine farms. Training videos in English and Spanish as well as downloadable handouts are available at z.umn.edu/UVbox

Continue reading “Evaluation of Efficacy of Ultraviolet Germicidal Chambers in Swine Farms”

Can vitamins play a role in feed biosecurity?

In an effort to examine the role of ingredients, especially vitamins, in feed biosecurity, the Swine Health Information Center (SHIC) and the University of Minnesota organized a vitamin manufacturing sector-wide workshop. Representatives from pork industry organizations including National Pork Board, National Pork Producers Council, American Association of Swine Veterinarians, vitamin manufacturers and blenders, and feed industry associations joined SHIC and the University of Minnesota for the workshop in late April in St. Paul, Minnesota. Participants focused on vitamins and the processes involved prior to delivery to a producer’s farm, with special focus on African swine fever transport and transmission risk.

Continue reading “Can vitamins play a role in feed biosecurity?”

Science Page: Biosecurity screening tool; Benchmarking PRRSv biosecurity vulnerability using a short survey

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 we are sharing a report by Dr. Linhares’ lab at Iowa State University. In this Science Page are the results of a study looking at biosecurity aspects associated with PRRS frequency.

Key Points

  • New methods allow estimation of the overall PRRS-vulnerability risk score by asking 20 or less questions.
  • This can help producers and veterinarians to (a) measure and benchmark key biosecurity aspects, and (b) toidentify sites at relatively higher (or lower) risk of PRRSv introduction.

Study Summary: This study aimed to identify a small set of biosecurity aspects that, when combined, have a strong association with the frequency of PRRSv introduction into swine breeding herds.

Parameters included in the 2 models (A and B) to predict the number of PRRS outbreaks in farms for the past 5 years.

Preliminary Results: A cross-sectional study assessed biosecurity aspects in 84 breeding herds from 14 production systems in 2017. Models were trained to predict whether a farm had or not reported a PRRS outbreak in the past 5 years, given a set of biosecurity aspects. Two methods were used, and both models were able to classify the herds with a great overall performance based on few biosecurity aspects (See figure). The variables used by both methods were related to the frequency of risk events in the farm, swine density around the farm, farm characteristics/ requirements to visitors, and operational connections to other sites.

Note: The Gini coefficient (or index) is a single number aimed at measuring the degree of inequality in a distribution. (Source: Wikipedia) The higher the number, the less equally distributed the farms will be.

When comparing the predicted positive value obtained by the models, they showed a strong positive correlation (0.7 and 0.76, respectively) with the frequency of past outbreaks.

Enroll on our follow-up study: Study farms will be asked to fill a short survey. Using the methods above, the PRRS-vulnerability risk score will be generated for each farm enrolled. The information will be collected via an Excel file and the name of the farms and production systems will be kept confidential.

To enroll or request additional information please contact: Gustavo Silva (gustavos-at-iastate.edu) or Daniel Linhares (linhares-at-iastate.edu) at Iowa State University.