University of Minnesota Researchers Examine Effectiveness of Airborne Pathogen Biocontainment Technologies

Farmscape for February 1, 2022

Full Interview 12:07 Listen

Researchers with the University of Minnesota are working to apply technologies being used in other industries to contain the airborne movements pathogens to swine production. In an effort to find ways to keep bioaerosols from triggering disease outbreaks in swine, researchers with the University of Minnesota in partnership with the Swine Health Information Center are examining various aerosol technologies. SHIC Executive Director Dr. Paul Sundberg says the folks at the University of Minnesota have gone through an extensive literature review to identify different biocontainment technologies being used in any industry around the world.

Clip-Dr. Paul Sundberg-Swine Health Information Center:
They found more than 80 references and there’s a long list of the type of technologies that they found. There’s filtration, ionization.
There’s ultraviolet light, electrostatic precipitation. There’s a lot of things that they found that are possible to help contain aerosols onto a site and again, not only in pig production but in any different kind of industry. The next step is to take that long list and convene a group of experts and have them assess the list and give their opinions about application to the pork industry itself.
Which ones of these can be cost effective, which ones are just out of our scope to be able to implement? As we go on, as soon as that step is done, in 2022 we plan to have further research to test those technologies out and be able to assess their cost effectiveness and give producers information about the availability and the effectiveness of these different technologies on the farm.

Dr. Sundberg says researchers are looking at all things airborne in an effort to find cost effective technologies or procedures that will help prevent that aerosolized movement of pathogens.

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