Research and development vaccine against lower respiratory tract diseases in pig breeding

To discover and develop methods of isolation, identification and propagation of bacterial strains which will be used after completion of the project for the preparation of a new polyvalent vaccine against infectious diseases of lower respiratory tract in pigs.

Currently, pig breeding and pork production are at the limit of profitability. One of the main causes of this situation in the CZECH REPUBLIC is a very bad health condition of the animals, which does not allow profitable breeding. For this reason, many pig farmers decided to repopulate their farms to create a recovered herd, i.e. to liquidate the original, sick herd and stock animals with a defined health status. The health and genetic basis of these animals are essential for profitable pig breeding. In these herds, however, there are potential agents of less serious diseases of lower respiratory tract. Due to the predominance of supply over demand and an increasing pressure from chain stores, no significant increase in purchase prices of slaughter pigs - the final product of farmers as primary producers, can be expected. A way to increase profitability is to reduce costs and improve productivity. Primary producers will establish themselves on the unified European market only if they are able to produce pigs for a competitive price. An important factor in productivity is mainly the health status of pigs. Diseases represent a major financial burden on farms and cause the following undesirable effects: - Medicinal products are manufactured mainly by foreign manufacturers (PFIZER - Great Britain, KRKA - Slovenia and NOVARTIS - Switzerland), therefore the import of medicines from abroad has been increasing. While the foreign manufacturers strengthen economically from these diseases on Czech farms, the Czech pig farms are burdened by high costs of treatment and the breeding economy is getting above the limit of profitability. - The cost of treating diseases and the subsequent weight decreases cause such a substantial financial burden that pig farms in the CZECH REPUBLIC are not profitable and go bankrupt. These farms are usually in rural areas, in economically weak regions, and are one of the few job opportunities for local residents. As a result, there is again an increased import of meat from abroad and foreign farms become economically stronger due to diseases on the Czech farms. - In the treatment of diseases in pigs large quantities of antibiotics are getting into the food chain in the so-called residual form and have a negative effect on the human health. The environment contaminated with antibiotics causes the emergence of dangerous antibiotic-resistant microorganisms (MRSA (Multidrug-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus), etc.), which are difficult to treat in case of infection. Diseases of lower respiratory tract, which are mainly due to the bacteria Haemophilus parasuis, Streptococcus suis and Mycoplasma hyosynoviae, belong to the most serious and most common diseases on pig farms. These diseases are usually dealt with only at the time of disease through the use of drugs, especially antibiotics from the group of tetracyclines, penicillins and macrolides and their combinations. An alternative to these forms of treatment is vaccination and induction of active immunity against major zoonotic diseases. Vaccination is one way of maintaining good health that is fundamental for animal welfare and has a positive effect on production parameters. Vaccination is a preventive measure that helps the animal to resist infection or to alleviate the course of disease. This leads to a reduction or complete elimination of interruptions in production. Vaccination of animals against diseases transmissible to humans (zoonosis) is significant in terms of health of the workers who are in direct contact with animals, their excrements, or are involved in the processing of raw materials derived from these animals. Streptococcus suis type 2 belongs to a group of such causative agents and can pose serious health risks to humans. Annually, there are hundreds of cases worldwide of employees infected on farms or in processing plants, who came into contact with infected material and manifested serious health problems (meningitis, septicaemia, arthritis, uveitis), or died in extreme cases. The eradication of such diseases and their agents is highly desirable, both socially and economically. The project will focus on the research and development of methods of isolation, identification and propagation of Haemophilus parasuis, Streptococcus suis and Mycoplasma hyosynoviae, intended to prepare a polyvalent vaccine after the completion of the project. The vaccine will be indicated primarily to the recovered pig herds, to have a positive effect on the health situation in individual locations and to reduce or completely eliminate the use of antibiotics in these groups of animals, which would result in reducing the cost of breeding, eliminating the risk of antibiotic residue in the raw materials intended for human consumption and reducing the formation of resistant microorganisms.
Project ID: 
6 717
Start date: 
Project Duration: 
Project costs: 
850 000.00€
Technological Area: 
Virus, Virology, Vaccines/ Antiobiotics / Bacteriology
Market Area: 
Animal Husbandry

Raising the productivity and competitiveness of European businesses through technology. Boosting national economies on the international market, and strengthening the basis for sustainable prosperity and employment.