Zoetis Inc. recently announced a research partnership with Iowa State University (ISU) to identify and test a vaccine candidate to help control porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) in the United States.
“Establishing this partnership further affirms our commitment to fighting this devastating virus,” said Gloria Basse, vice president, U.S. Pork Business Unit, Zoetis. “We look forward to working with the top researchers at Iowa State University to share knowledge and expertise as we make every effort, together, to help veterinarians and producers fight PEDV.”
New cases of PEDV continue to mount. Since the beginning of December, more than 100 new cases have been reported each week.1 PEDV now has spread to swine farms in 23 states since April 2013, with documented farm cases in the thousands. Losses from PEDV are significant and have been measured on some farms at 100% mortality for infected piglets up to three weeks old.
“We know how devastating this virus has been to the swine industry,” said Jianqiang Zhang, MD, PhD, assistant professor, ISU Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory. “We are eager to work with Zoetis and advance the research we’ve begun to find a solution.”
The development of a vaccine candidate is one element of Zoetis’ ongoing efforts to support swine veterinarians and pork producers control PEDV. In 2013, Zoetis began a collaboration with the University of Minnesota to develop a diagnostic test for the disease.
While research and development of solutions continue, it’s important for producers to remain vigilant with their biosecurity practices to deter the spread of PEDV. Follow these practices recommended by the American Association of Swine Veterinarians:
- Label and use chutes for loading and unloading. Use the loading chute only for animals that are leaving your farm. Healthy animals unloaded into the loading chute could be exposed to the virus.
- Wash and disinfect all unloading chutes and driver areas as often as possible. Use a 2% phenol-based disinfectant in the areas where drivers walk to enter the chute, from point of entry to the top and all areas where the chute contacts the truck.
- Require all trailers used for picking up animals to be cleaned and disinfected before arrival. Be sure to allow enough time for the disinfectant to dry completely before use.
- Provide coveralls and boots for employees to wear while on the farm. These materials should stay on-site and be washed routinely.
- If your farm allows guests, provide clear direction for where they should report upon arrival. Also, provide them with coveralls and boots before they enter any facilities.
Zoetis (zō-EH-tis) is the leading animal health company, dedicated to supporting its customers and their businesses. Building on a 60-year history as the animal health business of Pfizer, Zoetis discovers, develops, manufactures and markets veterinary vaccines and medicines, complemented by diagnostic products and genetic tests and supported by a range of services. In 2012, the company generated annual revenues of $4.3 billion. With approximately 9,300 employees worldwide at the beginning of 2013, Zoetis has a local presence in approximately 70 countries, including 29 manufacturing facilities in 11 countries. Its products serve veterinarians, livestock producers and people who raise and care for farm and companion animals in 120 countries. For more information on the company, visit www.zoetisUS.com.