Intrauterine Vaccination Offers Needle-Free Alternative to Protecting Pigs from PEDv

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Farmscape for July 5, 2022

Full Interview 6:50 Listen

The Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization reports the use of intrauterine vaccination as an alternative to needles to protect sows, gilts and their piglets from PED is showing promise. Researchers with the Western College of Veterinary Medicine and the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization are exploring the use of intrauterine vaccination as an alternative to needles. Dr. Pooja Choudhary, a postdoctoral fellow with VIDO, notes the majority of commercial pigs are bred by artificial insemination and the uterus is easily accessible during each reproductive cycle so the idea is to add vaccine into semen bags prior to insemination and deliver it to the uterus where it can generate an immune response, starting with Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea.

Clip-Dr. Pooja Choudhary-Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization:
Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea is viral disease of pigs. It affects both newborn piglets and adult pigs. In newborn pigs it can cause diarrhea, dehydration and high death rate up to 100 percent, while in adult pigs it presents mild symptoms and can cause diarrhea, depression and reduce the productive performance. To provide protection against PEDv, antibodies are generated in colostrum and milk during pregnancy and it remains a most effective way to protect neonatal suckling piglets. So, our focus for our new vaccine against PEDv is to formulate a vaccine that is able to protect the adult pigs against disease as well as to provide passive protection to suckling piglets via colostrum.
So, we have two major objectives, to protect moms and their piglets.

Dr. Choudhary says preliminary results have shown this approach to be safe. She says, at this point, researchers are able to formulate vaccines that do not affect sperm function or sow fertility but more work is needed to increase immune response.

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