PRRS control

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PRRS control

Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) is a viral disease that causes a decrease in reproductive performance in breeding animals and respiratory disease in pigs of any age. PRRS is the most economically significant disease affecting swine production in the world today.

The clinical course of PRRSV infection depends on the age, on the physiological (pregnancy status and trimester of gestation of the infected sow/gilt) and specific immune status of the animal and on the virulence of the infecting strain.

In general two main syndromes are associated with PRRSV: reproductive failure in pregnant sows and respiratory disease in piglets.

Studies found that pigs experimentally infected with nine different isolates of Type 2 PRRSV had major differences in clinical disease, rectal temperatures, and gross and histological lung lesions. Animals infected with mildly virulent isolates or the LV had transient pyrexia, dyspnea and tachypnea, whereas infection with highly virulent isolates induced labored breathing, pyrexia, lethargy, and anorexia. Furthermore, studies have reported that the impact on reproductive performance may be isolate dependent. 

Control of PRRS has proven to be difficult for several reasons, including the diversity of the strains circulating in the field as well as the lack of a complete understanding of the ways the virus enters and persists in the farm.

For the past 20 years, Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health has been helping the swine industry worldwide combat PRRS. With PRRS vaccines, technical expertise, collaborative research and diagnostic advancements, we are working with veterinarians and producers to win the battles against this challenging disease.
In practical terms, control of PRRSV is now understood as a multi-sided task including biosecurity measures, diagnostic surveillance and immunization.

Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) is a complex disease. MLV vaccines are the primary immunological tool for its control, but a systematic approach should be implemented in order to achieve sustainable results. Boehringer Ingelheim has developed a strong platform to consolidate PRRS control in pig farms, large production systems and even geographical areas.

This platform is a pig population approach having as main goals to maximize immunity, reduce PRRS virus (PRRSv) exposure and prevent new PRRSv infections. The foundation for this approach comes from the scientific method and continuous improvement philosophy known as Six Sigma, where processes get improved through the Define-Measure-Analyze-Improve-Control (DMAIC) methodology.

The Complexity of PRRS has allowed implementing this methodology in the Swine Industry around the globe. PRRS control goes way beyond than just vaccination; it requires a full understanding of the disease and a set of tools to achieve a long term success, therefore a standardized 5 step process has been implemented to successfully achieve PRRS control.

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