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Eddicks, Matthias; Koeppen, M.; Willi, S.; Fux, R.; Reese, Sven ORCID: 0000-0002-4605-9791; Sutter, Gerd ORCID: 0000-0001-6143-082X; Stadler, J.; Ritzmann, Mathias (2016): Low prevalence of porcine circovirus type 2 infections in farrowing sows and corresponding pre-suckling piglets in southern German pig farms. In: Veterinary microbiology, Vol. 187: pp. 70-74
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Porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2) is the assumed causative agent of a number of different diseases summarized as porcine circovirus diseases (PCVD). The virus is shed via different se- and excretions of PCV2 infected pigs. Transmission of the virus occurs horizontally and vertically either by oronasal or diaplacental infection. Recent research emphasizes the importance of diaplacental PCV2 infection or the infection in early stages of the piglet’s life attributable to excretion of PCV2 by the dams within the suckling period. To estimate the prevalence of intrauterine PCV2 infections under field conditions in Bavaria the PCV2 status of farrowing sows (n = 198) and corresponding pre-suckling piglets (n = 590) of 20 piglet producing farms was examined. PCV2 viral load and anti-PCV2 antibodies in the serum of the sows and piglets were examined at time of farrowing or before colostrum intake, respectively. PCV2 excretion of the sows via saliva, feces and urine was examined additionally. PCV2 specific antibodies in the serum of the sows were detectable on 11 farms with a mean in herd seroprevalence of 35.5% in these farms. Only 0.65% of all samples collected from 198 sows were positive for PCV2 DNA (serum: 1%; feces: 0.5%; saliva: 0.5%; urine: 0.6%). PCV2 DNA was detectable in sample material from seronegative sows as well as from seropositive sows. In none of the pre-suckling serum samples of the piglets IgG antibodies against PCV2 or PCV2 DNA were present. No correlation between the antibody- and viremia status of the sows and the PCV2 excretion was detectable. In contrast to reports about a high prevalence of viremic pre-suckling piglets in the suckling period in North America, the results of the present study reveal that diaplacental infection with PCV2 is comparatively rare in Southern Germany and infection of piglets within the suckling period seems to be more likely.