WASHINGTON, June 16, 2014 – USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) has issued Harrisvaccines Inc. of Ames, Iowa, a conditional license for a vaccine that may help control the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus. This is the first licensed vaccine for PEDv, which has killed more than 8 million hogs in the U.S. since it was found in U.S. herds in the spring of 2013.
APHIS said the vaccine will be used to vaccinate sows with the intent that they build antibody, and transmit that antibody through their milk to newborn piglets, which are most vulnerable to the disease.
In a release, the agency said conditional licenses are issued based on full safety, purity testing, and an expectation of efficacy. Preliminary studies on the Harrisvaccine product have been promising, and the company will continue working toward completing the requirements for a full license, APHIS said. In the meantime, there are no restrictions on vaccine use under the conditional license.
Common in parts of Asia and Europe, porcine epidemic diarrhea is a disease that causes significant sickness in swine, affecting their growth and health, and causes high mortality in piglets. PEDv only affects pigs and does not pose any risk to people or pets. It is not a food safety concern.
Licensing this vaccine is another step APHIS is taking to continue to help industry/producers. Recently the agency announced the availability of $26.2 million in funding to combat pig disease and issued a federal order requiring the reporting of new detections of PEDv and new swine enteric coronavirus disease to APHIS or state animal health officials.
APHIS is part of a task force with the FDA and state and industry stakeholders, including the American Association of Swine Veterinarians, National Pork Producers Council and the National Pork Board (NPB) which aims to investigate the virus, identify and trace risk factors in the transmission of the disease, and keep producers informed.
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