Molecular detection of Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus, Porcine Circovirus 2 and Hepatitis E Virus in oral fluid compared to their detection in faeces and serum
Background: Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome Virus (PRRSV), Porcine Circovirus Type 2 (PCV2) and Hepatitis E virus (HEV) are common and economically important viral disease causative agents detected in pig oral fluid (OF), faeces and serum at some infection stages. The purpose of this study was to detect PRRSV, PCV2 and HEV on six pig farms to determine which of the three sample types, OF, faeces or serum is appropriate for the diagnosis of these viruses in different pig
... The following pig categories were included: 5 weeks-old (w/o), 7 w/o, 9 w/o, 11 w/o weaners, fatteners and breeding sows. Pursuant to the preliminary detection of each pathogen at the selected farms, OF samples, faeces, serum pools and 10 individual sera were examined, using PCR, for each age category. If any of the viruses were found in pools of faeces and OF, then faeces and OF from positive farms were tested separately for each pig category. The viral nucleic acids were detected using RT-PCR, PCR and real-time RT-PCR, for PRRSV, PCV2 and HEV respectively.Results: PRRSV and HEV were detected on one farm and PCV2 on three others, positive results being more often obtained from the OF than from the faeces of the same animals. Ten individual serum samples from pigs from the same group of animals were also tested. The viruses were detected in almost all individual sera and OF in the same pig category with some exceptions: PRRSV was detected in the OF of fatteners but was absent in their sera; on Farm 2, PCV2 was detected in sera of 11 w/o pigs and fatteners but absent in group samples of their OF and, vice versa, in case of 9 w/o animals; HEV was detected in the OF of the youngest, 5 w/o weaners and absent in sera of the same age group.Conclusions: The primary finding of the study is that OF is a welfare-friendly, non-invasive and highly efficient matrix for pathogen detection, thus evidencing the usefulness of pig OF as a matrix in which each of the three viruses considered can be detected with the highest probability.