Circovac could provide protection for piglets against PCV2 up to the age of 21 weeks, according to new research revealed recently at the American Association of Swine Veterinarians Congress.
Reviewing research on piglet vaccination using Circovac, Merial Animal Health’s swine technical director, Dr Thais Vila, demonstrated the longer periods of protection, as well as improved growth, better feed conversion ratios (FCR) and reduced mortality provided.
Dr Vila said that piglets vaccinated at three weeks of age, challenged at 17 weeks and monitored up to 21 weeks were protected against PCV2-associated clinical signs and gained on average 2.4kg more in liveweight compared to unvaccinated piglets. This increased level of growth was also seen in an Italian study where piglets vaccinated at three weeks performed better during the 25-220 day Parma ham production period.
As well as improving average daily weight gain (ADWG), FCRs were improved by Circovac as well. On a 1,200-sow Spanish operation, a trial compared 23 batches of fatteners produced before Circovac piglet vaccination with 21 batches produced afterwards. There was a significant improvement in FCR from 3.13 before to 2.88 after.
Dr Vila presented data compiled from 86 European farms in Spain, Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria and France, covering a total of 519,530 piglets. On farms where the post-weaning mortality rate was more than 4% in control pigs, this was significantly reduced in vaccinated pigs. Even on farms with a post-weaning mortality of less than 4%, there was still a significant reduction in all but two farms.
Merial Animal Health’s veterinary adviser, Brian Rice, said the studies demonstrated that there were significant benefits to be gained by vaccinating piglets with Circovac, and results observed were at least as good as those achieved by other piglet vaccines against PCV2.
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