The first week-end in December is usually the time of the North American PRRS symposium. This year did not upset the tradition but this time, the conference was in collaboration with the National Swine Improvement Federation.
The meeting was dedicated to our friend and colleague Dr. Bob Morrison. A memorial fellowship organized by Dr. Montse Torremorell (U of MN) and Dr. Joan Lunney (USDA) provided travel support to future scientists who wish to follow in his footsteps.
Stephen Gerike from the Pork Checkoff shared information on the state of pork products used in restaurant. Bacon represents 20% of products used but is still growing (+4% since last year).
Stephen Gerike shared the updated cooking recommendations for pork product.
Overall, 82% of restaurant customers eat the same or larger amount of pork which is a good trend for the industry. Mr. Gerike also shared the efforts done by Pork Checkoff to convince consumers to not overcook their pork. Reminder: 145F is safe. “Cook your pork like you cook your steak!”
The University of Minnesota was well represented during the conference. Dr. Montse Torremorell moderated the Saturday morning session on PRRS in the field. Drs. Cesar Corzo, Carles Vilalta and Juan Sanhueza shared the updates on the Morrison Swine Health Monitoring Program as well as regarding the studies that they are involved with. Take away messages:
MSHMP is now collecting information from 50% of the sows in the United States.
Based on this data, 58% of the farms breaking with PRRSV today will break again within a year.
PRRS summer outbreaks happen and vary based on location (see figure below).
Farms take a longer time to reach stability after a summer outbreak (median 41.5 weeks)
Processing fluids can be used as a monitoring method for PRRS.
The recipients of the Pijoan and Leman fellowships were revealed last week and we are proud to announce that two great candidates were selected.
Dr. Eliana Silva Paladino is receiving the Carlos Pijoan fellowship. Eliana obtained her DVM and MS degrees in Brazil and is currently a PhD student advised by Dr. Julio Alvarez. Eliana’s PhD is focusing on the application of quantitative tools for the management of problems of relevance to the swine industry at both the farm and population (i.e., supra-farm) levels. She is currently focusing on developing systems to quantify the effect of endemic diseases such as swine influenza and the management strategies adopted for their control in affected farms. She is also working on the assessment of trends in submissions received at veterinary diagnostic laboratories over time to evaluate the impact of changes in disease distribution, diagnostic approaches and farm management in the U.S.
Dr. Jose Angulo is receiving the Allen Leman fellowship. Jose obtained his DVM degree in Mexico and is currently a PRRS specialist and managing veterinarian for Zoetis in charge of U.S. customers. Jose will be completing his Masters in Dr. Montse Torremorell’s lab and his work will focus on understanding PRRS infections in growing pigs and how to prevent them.
Title: Epidemiological investigation of a non-reportable endemic disease: Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) in the US
Presented by: Pablo Valdes-Donoso
Date:Friday, June 9, 2017 Time: 3:00 – 4:00 pm Place: 385-J, AS/VM Building
Abstract: Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS), caused by a highly mutagenic and resistant RNA-virus, is an endemic disease that has been noted as one of the most important animal production diseases in the US because of its large economic damage on the swine industry. Nonetheless, there is no official control framework for this disease, so producers rely on voluntary regional control programs (RCPs) for its mitigation. Despite efforts to control PRRS, it persists in the environment, affecting a large number of farms every year. Using information shared by a specific RCP (RCP-N212), this dissertation focused on important aspects of PRRS dynamics within an RCP. Specifically, this dissertation encompassed five chapters. An introductory chapter is followed by the second chapter, which quantifies the extent to which RCPs contribute to PRRS control. After that, a prediction of network structure was made to forecast animal movements among farms within the RCP-N212. Then, longitudinal data collected from sow farms were used to measure the impacts of PRRS on production. Finally, a disaggregated disease diffusion model was used to depict PRRS dynamics within the RCP-N212, as well as to evaluate individual and collective strategies adopted by producers. This dissertation provides insight to the evaluation of regional control strategies that may be used as a framework for a formal PRRS control program.
The UMN CVM students did a fantastic job at the 2017 American Association of Swine Veterinarians (AASV) meeting this past weekend. Four students presented their projects as an oral presentation. Zhen Yang, Alyssa Anderson, Hunter Baldry and Chris Deegan were all recognized by a jury for their hard work and commitment to the swine industry.
Taylor Homann, Donna Drebes, and Kevin Gustafson all got the opportunity to present their work as poster presentations.
Lastly, two out of the three awards given by Boehringer Ingelheim to advance the research on swine respiratory pathogens were given to Dr. Marie Culhane and Dr. Carlos Vilalta for their project on swine influenza and Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome virus (PRRSV) respectively.
The swine group was well represented at the 2017 MVMA meeting. Ms. Alyssa Anderson and Dr. Karine Ludwig Takeuti both gave a presentation on diagnostic tools to detect Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae infections. Drs. Jorge Garrido Mantilla and Fabian Chamba Pardo shared the latest update on swine influenza. Dr. Amy Kinsley explained how the structure of a swine farm can influence disease persistence. Dr. Talita Resende shared the advantages of a fairly recent diagnostic technique: in situ hybridization. Congratulations to Ms. Alyssa Anderson who also received a $5,000 Food Animal Scholarship from the MVM Foundation!