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The farm recorded 0% incidence of PHE cases, thereby remov- ing the need for antibiotic related to diarrhoea use in pigs. The vaccinated group also had a reduction in mortality of 39% (from 3.60 to 2.20), equivalent to a saving of € 1.09/pig. There was reduction in FCR of 3.45% for the vaccinated group (from 2.90 g/day to 2.80 g/day) which is equivalent to € 2.36/ pig. An increased in ADG of 7.90% was confirmed for the vac- cinated pigs (from 785 g/day to 847 g/day), equivalent to more than € 1.50/pig.


Trial 2 – A finisher farm with 3,800 fatteners This farm was using liquid feed for its fatteners. It had a histo- ry of PHE, which it had previously tried to control with L. in- tracellularis oral vaccination. This trial studied the effect of changing from an oral vaccine to vaccination with Merck’s IM vaccine. The results are for the first batch of IM vaccinated pigs to be slaughtered. The IM vaccination resulted in a reduction in the usage of antibiotic Tylosin by 87% (from 7.0 to 0.9 Defined Daily Dose). Mortality in the IM vaccinated group reduced with 26% (from 2.65 to 1.95), equivalent to a saving of € 0.55/pig. Data to date (un- validated) support that the IM vaccinated pigs had an in- creased ADG of 3.36% (from 832 g/day to 860 g/day).


• IM vaccination group had increased ADG of 13.26% compared to the oral group (from 543 g/day to 615 g/day)


Finishers:


Denmark: Weaner farm A weaner farm had previously vaccinated piglets with oral L. intracellularis vaccine. This study compared the effect of oral vaccination versus Porcilis Lawsonia to protect against ileitis. 6,000 piglets were moved to the weaner farm. The weaners were vaccinated with either the oral or IM vaccine. The aver- age weight of the piglets at weaning was 7.3kg and the aver- age number of days in stable was 48. A total of 3,600 piglets were then transferred to a finisher farm. The results can be sub-divided into weaners and finishers as follows: Weaners:


vaccination of the fatteners with Merck’s Lawsonia vaccine. 7 months old at slaughter with an average weight of 125kg.


• The vaccinated group had a decrease in FCR compared to the controls of 6% (from 2.666 to 2.508)


• IM vaccination provided a return on investment of 2.0. Trial 2 - Prior to weaning: Combination of Ileitis and


• A decrease in the need for oral antibiotic medication was measured in the IM vaccine group, from twice/day to once/day.


• Medicated treatment was required for a shorter period of time in IM vaccine group (1 day compared to 4 days treatment)


Trials in Spain A total of three trials were conducted; two were performed at entrance to the fattening unit and one trial prior to weaning. Vaccination was with Porcilis Lawsonia either administered solely or in combination with Porcilis PCV Mhyo. The results were compared to unvaccinated controls or unvaccinated- medicated controls. Trial 1 – Entrance to the fattening unit: IM vaccine versus unvaccinated controls Landrace x LW pigs intended for fatty pig production. IM


PCV M Hyo Merck vaccines versus unvaccinated controls The trial was carried out on Iberian x Duroc pigs intended for special production. The piglets were divided into two groups, either vaccination with Merck’s Lawsonia vaccine and Porcilis PCV Mhyo vaccines at 4 weeks of age, or unvaccinated con- trols. Piglets were from a single origin but raised in two differ- ent fattening farms, both of which have ileitis infections. Slaughter was at a minimum of 10 months of age. The vacci- nation resulted in a reduction in mortality of 32% compared to the control group and in a reduction in the average cost of antibiotics per pig of 32%. Trial 3 - Vaccination prior to entering the fattening unit: Vaccinated vs unvaccinated- medicated controls Landrace x LW pigs for growing and finishing were used in this trial. The farm had a history of ileitis. The pigs were vaccinated prior to entering the fattening unit, the unvaccinated control group were medicated with antibiotics and feed additives. Pigs were an average weight of 120kg at slaughter. The results showed the vaccinated group had a lower cost of disease control compared to the unvaccinated- medicated group of € 0.60 per pig.


Protection against L. intracellularis The results of these field trials support the previously published data by Jacobs et al. 2019, reinforcing that the inactivated vaccine Porcilis Lawsonia, either as standalone, or in mixed use with Porcilis PCV M Hyo, induces significant protection against L. intracellularis. This has been demonstrated by improved ADG and FCR, reduction of mortality, as well as reduction in use of antibiotics.


On-demand versions of the HQP20 seminars can be found in the “Merck Animal Health – Swine Team” YouTube channel.


▶ GUT HEALTH | DECEMBER 2020 99


Lawsonia intra- cellularis though primarily recog- nised in pigs, is spreading to a wide range of mammals.


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