Researchers in Saskatoon have found they can effectively vaccinate both sows and gestating piglets by combining vaccine with semen during artificiai insemination.
Dr. Heather Wilson, a research scientist with the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization at the University of Saskatchewan, recently explained the research in an interview with Farmscape.
"Most of the diseases that are important for the pig industry actually impact reproduction or they impact the newborn piglets," she said, so putting vaccine into the uterus made sense. Piglets would pick up immunity via colostrum.
"You're inseminating, why not administer the vaccine directly to the uterus along with the semen and go from there?"
Dr Wilson says initial results suggest a strong antibody response and no negative effects on the semen, the piglets and the sows.
She said more trials will be needed on this “very promising” approach to vaccination.