PED update: Disease spread appears to be slowing
Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea (PED) continues to be a big concern in the pork industry. Dr. Darin Madson of the Iowa State University Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory presented a PED update at the recent Iowa Swine Day.
He reported that the number of confirmed positive premises in the U.S. had risen to 210. (In a presentation at World Pork Expo on June 5, one of his colleagues from the ISU Diagnostic Lab reported the number of confirmed positive premises was 103.)
Madson said the causes of most of the confirmed cases have been found to be directly associated with pig movements or cross-contamination of boots, trucks, etc. with fecal matter from infected pigs. For instance, some of the earliest cases in Indiana can be directly linked to pig transfers from the first confirmed domestic PED case in Ohio.
It is not known how the virus spread to Iowa, but the spread of the disease within the state can again be mapped back to pig transfers and the spread of infectious wastes from contaminated boots and transportation equipment.
Madson reiterated that we have still not seen any confirmed positive tests for PED from any feed or feed ingredient samples.
It now appears that increased vigilance in adhering to proper biosecurity protocols has greatly slowed the spread of the disease.
The disease has been shown to be spread only pig-to-pig and by oral-fecal transmission. The virus has a 12- to 18-hour incubation period within the pig, with severe diarrhea starting about 24 to 26 hours after infection. Therefore, PED outbreaks are generally noted four to five days after pig movements. Infected pigs shed the virus for seven to nine days after infection, and no long-term virus carriers have been reported to date.
Because the PED virus is killed by most common disinfectants and warm, dry conditions, it is believed that the disease can be eradicated from facilities where infected pigs have resided through the use of thorough sanitation and down time between pig groups.
Contact your Vita Plus consultant if you would like to discuss PED management or other biosecurity and disease management strategies for your operation.
About the author: Dr. Dean Koehler has served as swine technical services manager since joining Vita Plus in 2001. He was raised in southwest Minnesota and was active in 4-H and FFA. His youth livestock projects included raising and showing swine and sheep. Koehler earned his bachelor’s degree in animal science and his master’s degree and Ph.D. in swine nutrition from the University of Minnesota. His master’s research investigated the digestibility of raw soybean varieties naturally low in anti-nutritional factors when fed to growing pigs. His doctorate research utilized a stable isotope of the amino acid lysine to measure how efficiently sows transfer dietary lysine into their milk. Koehler is interested in all facets of swine nutrition. His role at Vita Plus is to provide technical service to the field and supervise the development of support tools, such as technical bulletins and spreadsheets. Additionally, he is the author the Vita Plus online grow-finish feed budgeting software, mentor.