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Saturday, September 23, 2023

Management of influenza begins with easy issues


When asking the query, “How can influenza be managed on a pig farm?” the very first thing that involves thoughts is “vaccines.” The second factor might be “gilts” and the third is “individuals.” That order for answering the query is completely comprehensible given the proof that reveals that vaccines, significantly vaccines in sows, are generally used on pig farms to guard piglets from influenza. Gilts and persons are additionally necessary as a result of each could be sources of latest strains into farms, and gilts could be amplifiers of current infections. All this interprets into the necessity to have a complete multi-prong strategy to controlling influenza.

Nonetheless, one aspect of the equation that’s typically forgotten is the necessity to lower the viral problem to inclined populations comparable to new child piglets. Piglets are born detrimental for influenza infections and piglets in endemically contaminated farms develop into contaminated quickly previous to weaning. Sadly, even piglets born to vaccinated sows could develop into contaminated. Whether or not or not a piglet farrowed by a vaccinated sow turns into contaminated is determined by how properly the vaccine matches the influenza strains circulating within the herd. Each the standard and amount of the immune response issues. Whenever you perceive that vaccination, that “No. 1 factor to manage illness,” is imperfect, it makes you understand how necessary it’s to lower the viral problem by different strategies.

When attempting to lower the virus problem to a piglet, it’s first obligatory to determine the place the virus is outdoors the pig and how it strikes across the farm. Needless to say influenza could be very contagious! The virus could be discovered on many surfaces across the farm (e.g., pen railings, flooring, partitions, hallways, and so on.) and the virus may also be discovered on many supplies that come  in touch with piglets, significantly these used to deal with the pigs.

In a examine by Lopez et al., (1)  influenza was detected in 46% of samples collected from carts and instruments used throughout processing, and a standard and considerably stunning discovering was to see how typically it was detected on the fingers and coveralls of workers (58%). The probability of detection was increased if the employee had been performing chores involving weaning piglets. It has been recognized for a few years that influenza prevalence throughout the weaning interval tends to be excessive (2). 

Lopez et al (3) revealed that chores comparable to pre-weaning vaccinations and even the weaning course of itself resulted in vital contamination of the employees’ fingers and coveralls, and the virus was typically viable and able to spreading pig to pig. If these employees then carry out different farm chores comparable to piglet processing, or vaccinating gilts, it’s then very seemingly that they might transmit influenza. Transmission of influenza by contaminated fingers and coveralls (i.e., fomites) has been proven experimentally (4) and it didn’t take a lot to transmit influenza by way of fomites. Thus, a suggestion from our research is the necessity to change coveralls and wash fingers after finishing high-risk duties comparable to weaning pigs – particularly when these duties happen very first thing within the morning.

A query that involves thoughts then is, “How ought to individuals wash their fingers to forestall spreading influenza from pig to pig?” We got down to reply this query by evaluating 4 hand hygiene protocols: a) washing with water solely, b) washing with cleaning soap and water, c) utilizing an alcohol-based hand sanitizer or, d) sporting gloves. After dealing with influenza-infected pigs for 10 minutes, examine members adopted one of many hand hygiene protocols, and their fingers have been examined for influenza by RT- PCR earlier than and afterwards. The outcomes indicated that each one hand hygiene protocols have been helpful at eradicating some virus from the fingers, however solely the usage of the alcohol-based sanitizer and sporting gloves have been efficient at eliminating or stopping the contamination of fingers with influenza virus. Washing fingers with cleaning soap and water was not sufficient to get rid of the virus from fingers. Suppose twice when washing fingers, and think about using a squirt of an alcohol-based sanitizer, together with after having a shower.

So, again to the query on what to do to manage flu, do not forget about easy issues comparable to to the right way to correctly comply with hand hygiene practices, change coveralls and clear the atmosphere. This stuff, though not fancy and technical, will lower virus problem to piglets and decrease the probability of changing into contaminated within the first place. These primary practices is not going to solely assist the pigs however may also assist lower the danger of influenza transmission between pigs and employees.


  1. Lopez-Moreno G, Garrido-Mantilla J, Sanhueza JM, Rendahl A, Davies P, Culhane M, McDowell E, Fano E, Goodell C, Torremorell M. Analysis of dam parity and inner biosecurity practices in influenza infections in piglets previous to weaning. Prev Vet Med. 2022 Nov;208:105764. doi: 10.1016/j.prevetmed.2022.105764. Epub 2022 Sep 21. PMID: 36181751.
  1. Chamba Pardo, F. O., Alba-Casals, A., Nerem, J., Morrison, R. B., Puig, P., & Torremorell, M. (2017). Influenza Herd-Degree Prevalence and Seasonality in Breed-to-Wean Pig Farms within the Midwestern United States. Frontiers in veterinary science, 4, 167. https://doi.org/10.3389/fvets.2017.00167
  1. Lopez-Moreno G, Culhane MR, Davies P, Corzo C, Allerson MW, Torremorell M (2023). Farm administration practices related to influenza A virus contamination of individuals working in Midwestern United States swine farms. Accepted for publication. Porcine Well being Administration.
  1. Allerson MW, Cardona CJ, Torremorell M. Oblique Transmission of Influenza A Virus between Pig Populations below Two Totally different Biosecurity Settings. PLoS One. 2013 Jun 21;8(6):e67293. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0067293. PMID: 23805306; PMCID: PMC3689715.


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