Although vaccination is the main measure to control influenza A virus (IAV) in swine, there is limited information on the efficacy of sow vaccination on reducing IAV infections in pigs at weaning. We assessed the effect of sow vaccination on IAV infection in pigs at weaning in a cohort of 52 breeding herds studied prospectively. Herds were voluntarily enrolled according to their IAV history, sow vaccination protocol and monitored during six months (prospective longitudinal study). On each herd, nasal swabs were collected monthly from 30 pigs at weaning and tested for IAV by RT-PCR. IAV was detected in 25% (75/305) of sampling events. Of 9,150 nasal swab pools (3 individual nasal swabs/pool), 15% (458/3050) of pools tested IAV positive. IAV infections in pigs at weaning were lower in vaccinated herds compared to non-vaccinated ones. Moreover, no significant differences were seen between prefarrow and whole herd protocols, or the use of commercial versus autogenous IAV vaccines. Prefarrow and whole herd vaccination protocols reduced the odds of groups testing IAV positive at weaning in comparison with no vaccination. Our results are relevant when considering implementation of sow vaccination to control influenza infections in pigs at weaning and, hence, minimize transmission to growing pigs and other farms.
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