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Open AccessArticle

Vaccination Is a Suitable Tool in the Control of Aujeszky’s Disease Outbreaks in Pigs Using a Population Dynamics P Systems Model

1
Department of Mathematics ETSEA, University of Lleida, 25198 Lleida, Spain
2
Institute for Game and Wildlife Research, IREC. Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas-Universidad de Castilla la Mancha-Junta de Comunidad de Castilla la Mancha (CSIC-UCLM-JCCM), 13005 Ciudad Real, Spain
3
Department of Animal Science, ETSEA, University of Lleida, 25198 Lleida, Spain
4
Agrotecnio, University of Lleida, 25198 Lleida, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2020, 10(5), 909; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10050909
Received: 7 May 2020 / Revised: 17 May 2020 / Accepted: 22 May 2020 / Published: 24 May 2020
Maximizing the efficiency of pork production in line with sustainability and environmental restrictions presents a challenge for the pig industry in the coming years. It is necessary to develop practices based on cost/benefit analyses of the effects of disease on animal performance. Diseases can be controlled in various ways, such as vaccination programs and management protocols, among others, to control pathogens. We have developed a model to disentangle the effects of management and vaccination strategies to control one of the most important pig viral diseases, Aujeszky disease. Our results suggest that after confirming the diagnosis, early vaccination of most of the population is critical to decrease the spread of the virus and minimize its impact on pig productivity. However, the effect of management is negligible for the control of this virus. Thus, this model can be used to evaluate preventive medicine programs in the control of known diseases and for new ones that could appear in the future.
Aujeszky’s disease is one of the main pig viral diseases and results in considerable economic losses in the pork production industry. The disease can be controlled using preventive measures such as improved stock management and vaccination throughout the pig-rearing period. We developed a stochastic model based on Population Dynamics P systems (PDP) models for a standard pig production system to differentiate between the effects of pig farm management regimes and vaccination strategies on the control of Aujeszky’s disease under several different epidemiological scenarios. Our results suggest that after confirming the diagnosis, early vaccination of most of the population (>75%) is critical to decrease the spread of the virus and minimize its impact on pig productivity. The direct economic cost of an outbreak of Aujeszky’s disease can be extremely high on a previously uninfected farm (from 352–792 Euros/sow/year) and highlights the positive benefits of investing in vaccination measures to control infections. We demonstrate the usefulness of computational models as tools in the evaluation of preventive medicine programs aimed at limiting the impact of disease on animal production. View Full-Text
Keywords: pseudorabies; vaccination; management; control measures; Population Dynamics P system model pseudorabies; vaccination; management; control measures; Population Dynamics P system model
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Colomer, M.A.; Margalida, A.; Fraile, L. Vaccination Is a Suitable Tool in the Control of Aujeszky’s Disease Outbreaks in Pigs Using a Population Dynamics P Systems Model. Animals 2020, 10, 909.

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