Zoetis Animal Health Tuesday affirmed continued focus on finding solutions for porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, a newly-identified transmissible disease that has been working its way into swine herds across the country since May.
The virus results in high mortality rates for young hogs and symptoms similar to transmissible gastroenteritis. The USDA National Animal Health Laboratory Network reports that hogs in 17 states have tested positive for the virus as of Aug. 14.
Because treatment for the virus was unavailable at the time of discovery, Zoetis this spring partnered with the University of Minnesota to fund research on the virus, hoping to develop testing methods and/or a vaccine. Though the University developed a diagnostic test in July, a vaccine has not yet been released.
As the search continues, Michael Senn, DVM, Zoetis manager of Pork Technical Services, said Zoetis is continuing to draw on global resources to identify possible solutions for PEDV in addition to the rapid PEDV diagnostic test.
"I am committed to finding a solution, including quick-yielding diagnostic tools and efficacious vaccines, that can control this devastating virus," he said.
Also as part of its study, U of M sequenced the DNA of one strain of PEDV to improve the research potential for the virus.
Until a solution can be found, Senn said producers should continue to improve biosecurity procedures and contact a veterinarian if symptoms similar to TGE appear in herds.
Senn suggests following control guidelines also offered by the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, such as washing and disinfecting chutes and trucking areas; label and use chutes for specifically unloading or loading; provide coveralls and boots for employees; and designate a visitors' area.