More-infectious strains of respiratory virus hitting hog farms

Virus has hundreds of strains and new ones up the need for surveillance and vaccination


By Glacier FarmMedia Staff

via Manitoba Co-operator (Canada) - July 14, 2021


A highly virulent strain of Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome virus has pork officials stressing the importance of surveillance and vaccination programs.


There is also a need for a coordinated approach, industry officials from Ontario and the U.S. Midwest said during a recent webinar.


Although there are hundreds of strains of the virus, Dr. Marty Misener of South West Ontario Veterinary Service said his practice, which focuses solely on swine health, sees three predominant strains in the province: 1-1-1, 1-201-1 and 1-8-4. The 1-8-4 is a “very, very virulent strain” and the one causing the most significant loss, he said.


“Our industry should actually single out some very specific strains and throw a bunch of work at those strains,” said Misener.


The Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) virus was likened to “a pig equivalent to COVID-19” in an article posted on Genome Alberta’s website earlier this year...


... Although vaccination can help prevent pigs from being infected with the highly transmissible virus, “Here in Ontario, we haven’t been super aggressive with utilizing PRRS vaccine,” Misener said...