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PEDV outbreaks prompt a ‘CSI Pipestone’ investigation

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When the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) devastated the US hog industry in 2013, the Pipestone System remained fairly unscathed, with only a couple of farms experiencing outbreaks, according to Scott Dee, DVM.

Their luck changed in January 2014, however. Within a 24- to 48-hour period, six to eight of their managed farms were infected with PEDV, despite a high level of biosecurity.

Feed link discovered

“One common denominator across many of these farms was the occurrence of a feed outage in a specific subpopulation of animals, requiring an emergency feed delivery to a specific bin onsite,” Dee told Pig Health Today in a recent interview

The pigs, considered the index cases of PEDV, consumed feed from those bins.

“They became infected right away and had clinical signs of vomiting. We could see a link with feed because that’s the only thing in common across all these farms,” he explained.

Dee and his team collected material from inside the feed bins, tested it and found the virus.

“That was the first time anyone had ever shown contaminated feed could infect pigs through natural feeding,” Dee added.

Thus began a CSI-style investigation for the answer to how this happened. The search by Dee and the team at Pipestone Applied Research was joined by scientists from South Dakota State University, including professors Eric Nelson and Diego Diel, and continues today.

The investigation revealed PEDV’s viability in feed ingredients, Dee said. It also has expanded to include the survival of high-risk viruses and the potential dangers of imported feed ingredients.



tags: , , ,
  • What PED taught us about handling future disease outbreaks

    The porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) outbreak that devastated many US hog farms over the past 4 years served as a wake-up call for the pork industry to be more vigilant against foreign animal diseases.

  • PEDV still taking major toll on US sow farms

    Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) is still around and can lead to major losses for pork producers, cautioned Gene Nemechek, DVM, technical services veterinarian, Zoetis.

  • Currently available vaccines important tools for managing PEDV-infected sow herds

    Currently available vaccines can be important tools for managing sow herds endemically infected with porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV).

  • PEDV and other pathogens survive in feed for weeks

    In 2013-2014, infection of pig farms with PEDV was a frequent event, even in farms using the highest level of biosecurity. In an effort to determine how this could happen, Scott Dee, DVM, began investigating.

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