Check-off Funded PRRS Project: Research with Results!

Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) is an economically significant pathogen of the global swine industry. Economic analyses have documented losses averaging $252 per sow over a one year period due to elevated mortality rates, reduced growth and excessive medication and vaccination costs (Dee and others 1997a). While a number of control strategies have been developed, they are inconsistent and cannot be applied to all farms. Due to the propensity of PRRSV to undergo mutation, commercially available vaccines have limited efficacy. Like other RNA viruses, PRRSV mutates to escape environmental and host immunological pressure. Therefore, the ability to successfully control the disease for extended periods using traditional methods appears unlikely. At this time, many practitioners and producers feel the long-term viability of the US swine industry will be better served by PRRS eradication, rather than by coexistence.