Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica Inc., has selected four recipients of its annual Advancement in Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Research Awards. This year BIVI awarded $100,000 to support four separate studies by independent swine researchers and practitioners in their investigation of novel ways to diagnose, control and eradicate this costly swine disease. New research efforts focus on lateral infection, ventilation factors and biosecurity.

Specifically, the projects will research the use of biofilters to reduce PRRS virus exhausted from swine barns; the effect of modified-live virus PRRS vaccine alone or in conjunction with killed vaccines on late-term pregnant gilts; risk factors for virus transmission between farrowing and weaning; and the variability of virus sequencing among diagnostic laboratories.

This is the seventh year that BIVI has sponsored the PRRS research awards, which have been critical in improving the industry’s understanding of the disease. The following are the 2009 research award recipients and their research proposals recognized at the American Association of Swine Veterinarians annual conference in Dallas, Texas:

  • Jerry Torrison, DVM, University of Minnesota - A study on the effects of biofilters on the quantity of virus to determine the amount of PRRS virus exhausted from mechanically vented finishing barns versus barns with biofilters placed on the outside of exhaust fans.
  • Darwin Reickes, DVM, Swine Vet Center, St. Peter, Minn. - A study on the effects of modified-live PRRS vaccine alone or in conjunction with killed-virus vaccines on late-term pregnant gilts.
  • Spencer Wayne, DVM, Pipestone Veterinary Clinic, Pipestone, Minn. - An evaluation on the ecology of the PRRS virus in farrowing and the risk factors of virus transmission prior to weaning.
  • Amber Stricker, DVM, Suidae Health and Production, Algona, Iowa -  A study to determine whether there is a predictable degree of variability in PRRS virus ORF5 sequencing within and among state diagnostic laboratories.

Butch Baker, DVMIowaStateUniversity and new AASV president, served on the PRRS Research Review Board and noted that the number and quality of the research award proposals received illustrate the importance PRRS plays in pork productions. “For swine producers in many parts of the country, PRRS continues to be a costly and frustrating disease to manage. However, through sponsored research programs, we can find ways to improve current management programs and take the necessary steps toward eradicating this disease.” 

Baker also points out that these types of programs place a greater importance on the industry as a whole to improve the existing monitoring, diagnostic and detection processes.

In addition to Baker, members of the PRRS Review Board included:  Bill Mengeling, DVM, Iowa State University/National Animal Disease Center (retired); Locke Karriker, DVM, Iowa State University; Tim Loula, DVM, Swine Vet Center, St. Peter, Minn.; Luc Defresne, DVM, Seaboard Farms; and Daryl Olsen, DVM, Audubon-Manning Veterinary Clinic, Audubon, Iowa.

The four research proposals were selected based on established criteria that include potential for economic impact to the pork industry; originality and scientific quality; and probability of success in completing the study.

Proposal entries for the 2010 Advancement in PRRS Research Awards are due Jan. 1, 2010. For more information visit www..PRRSresearch.com.

Source: Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica