The University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine announced that it has developed a second diagnostic test for porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) to help stem the spread of the virus currently threatening North American swine populations. It is the first PEDV swine herd surveillance test announced in the U.S. and brings PEDV diagnostic testing up to swine industry disease monitoring standards.
This past July, the college developed a PEDV diagnostic test that detected the presence of the virus. The newly announced test can detect evidence of the virus and is a precise tool to detect a history of exposure to the virus.
If one pig has been exposed to PEDV, all animals around it are at risk. The new test will allow the swine industry to identify which pigs have been exposed to PEDV and act accordingly, even if animals have not shown symptoms of the disease.
PEDV is characterized by acute diarrhea and vomiting in pigs. PEDV outbreaks can wipe out an average of 50% of young swine at newly affected farms. PEDV poses no risk to other animals or human health and is not a food safety risk.
The virus has been confirmed in 23 U.S. states and Canada so far and continues to spread quickly. The latest figures put pig mortality from PEDV at an estimated 3 million pigs nationwide. There is no known effective vaccine or treatment for the virus at this time.
To help combat the economic and animal welfare losses caused by PEDV diagnosis and spread, the University of Minnesota is making the newly developed diagnostic herd surveillance test available to the swine industry immediately at its Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for less than $15 per serum sample submitted.