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The third European Porcine Circovirus Research Award has honoured Professor Joaquim Segalés from Spain and Dr Charlotte Sonne Kristensen from Denmark.

Diseases associated with PCV2 infection (PCVD) belong to the most devastating diseases in swine worldwide. Fortunately, in recent years, losses attributed to this disease complex can be controlled very effectively by vaccinating piglets.

Still, PCV2 remains a major threat for pig production, and further research is needed on PCV2 immunology and the interaction with other potential pathogens. It is Boehringer Ingelheim's intention to continuously support independent applied research in this field. A maximum of three prizes of €25,000 each, are granted to European researchers each year.

For the third year in a row, research projects were awarded in 2009, and prizes were recently presented to the award winners by Professor Maurice Pensaert, former head of the Laboratory of Virology of the Ghent University, and Dr Joachim Hasenmaier, Head of Corporate Division Animal Health at Boehringer Ingelheim, during a ceremony at the global headquarters of Boehringer Ingelheim in Ingelheim, Germany.

This year, two projects were selected by the independent review board for funding:

  • Effects of PCV2 vaccination upon basic parameters of the immune response of pigs in a PCV2 subclinical infection model. Interaction with Aujeszky’s disease vaccination. (Professor Joaquim Segalés of the University of Barcelona and CReSA, Spain). This research project investigates the negative impact of PCV2 on the immune system and the possibility to prevent this effect by vaccination.
  • Investigation of PCV2-free herds. (Dr Charlotte Sonne Kristensen of the Danish Agriculture and Food Council Pig Research Centre, Denmark). Dr Kristensen will evaluate factors that might have an influence on the PCV2 status of a swine herd.

European Porcine Circovirus (PCV2) Research Award

The European Porcine Circovirus (PCV2) Research Award is an annual award that recognises research proposals in the area of applied immunological PCV2 research. A maximum of three prizes of €25,000 each, are granted to European researchers who convince the independent jury with their outline of innovative research approaches in the field of swine immunology to explore Porcine Circovirus Disease (PCVD). With the award, Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health aims to promote further scientific progress to better understand and ultimately control this devastating swine disease.

The European PCV2 Award has an independent review board with leading European scientists in applied porcine research reviewing the entries and deciding upon the winning proposals. The panel is chaired by Professor Emeritus Maurice Pensaert from the Laboratory of Veterinary Virology at the University of Ghent in Belgium.