March 15, 2007


 University of Minnesota receives funds to study swine disease - March 15, 2007

Posted March 1, 2007

The Minnesota Rapid Agriculture Response Fund has approved $300,000 for research at the University of Minnesota to combat porcine circovirus-associated disease in the state.

University researchers identified the urgent need for additional research after PCVAD epizootics occurred in several locations in the United States and caused severe losses in other parts of the world—including Spain, the United Kingdom, and Quebec. Circovirus infection in pigs can lead to poor growth, weight loss, emaciation, and death. In a herd with circovirus infection, fewer than 5 percent of pigs have clinical signs, generally, but morbidity and mortality can reach 40 percent. Most pigs that have signs of the disease do not recover or respond to treatment.

The funding will enable researchers to investigate the epidemiology of porcine circovirus infections in boar studs and determine the role of nonporcine circovirus factors in causing PCVAD. Researchers will develop objective monitoring procedures—including diagnostic testing and sequencing—using boar stud serum, semen, and blood.

The Minnesota Legislature authorized the creation of the Rapid Agriculture Response Fund as a readily accessible source of assistance to accelerate research supporting the state's agricultural industry.