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Porcine haptoglobin and risk factors in finishing pigs

A cross-sectional study was performed in 98 commercial finisher pig herds. Clinical signs were recorded for up to 1000 pigs in each herd and haptoglobin concentration in serum was determined in 30 pigs per herd.

Lame pigs and pigs from herds with high prevalences of clinical signs of respiratory disease and diarrhea had high serum haptoglobin concentration. Increasing levels of antibodies against A. pleuropneumoniae serotype 2 and M. hyopneumoniae were associated with increasing serum haptoglobin concentration. Finishing pigs between 25 and 50 kg had high haptoglobin concentrations.

Regional differences in serum haptoglobin concentration possibly influenced by different observers were found. Herds with up to 12 hours quarantine for visitors and with high stocking density had high haptoglobin concentrations. Herds with continuous production had higher haptoglobin concentrations than herds with batch production without all-in/all-out. Serum haptoglobin concentration was found to be a promising indicator of clinical and subclinical disease in finishing pigs. However, before the use in herd health programmes, further studies are needed.

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Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University
Royal Agricultural and Veterinary University, Grønnegårdsvej 2
1870 Frederiksberg
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