APSA Biennial Conference, Cairns, Queensland, Australia, 22nd to 25th
APSA’s biennial conference highlighted some of the excellent science being conducted in Australia, as well as research from around the globe. The conference was attended by some 240 delegates, with a significant proportion (30%) of these< from Asia, NZ, America and Europe. A summary of the reviews and symposia from Manipulating Pig Production XII are presented below.
The A.C. Dunkin Memorial Lecture Presenter: Mr Paul Pattison, Dr Brian Luxford & Dr Robert van Barneveld
The A.C. Dunkin Memorial Lecture traditionally opens the APSA conference. The Lecture is delivered to inspire, encourage thought, and to give members of the pig science community the opportunity to think about their contribution to pork production and the overall contribution of pork production to the global community. In 2009, the format of the A.C. Dunkin Memorial Lecture was changed with inputs from three keynote speakers, all of whom are well-established members of the Australian pork industry. Mr Paul Pattison, General Manager of Rivalea Australia Pty Ltd, provided his view of the new directions the Australian industry may have to follow focussing on food safety, ethical production and value. Dr Brian Luxford, Technical Services Manager with Rivalea Australia Pty Ltd, outlined parameters that the Australian pig industry may have to adopt as the industry approaches 2025. Dr Luxford discussed potential revisions to genetic programs and breeding objectives, production with reduced reliance on antibiotics, the role for biotechnology in a future pig industry, and the need for integration of research resources. The Lecture was concluded by Dr Robert van Barneveld, a Consultant Research Scientist to the Australian pork industry specialising in nutrition. Dr van Barneveld discussed the global needs to supply food for human consumption, how pork may contribute to meeting this need in Australia and overseas, and what we may be using for nutrients to feed pigs in 15 years time.
Take home message:
In the years to come, pork production systems are very likely to change as a consequence of consumer demand. Whilst these production systems will have to meet the increasing needs of the consumer, there is an expectation that pork will need to be competitively priced in the market place. In global terms, chicken and pork consumption is likely to increase significantly, and new solutions will be needed to produce this pork given the limitations in a number of inputs such as grain, water and land.
Review: PCV2, PMWS, vaccines and the immune system… what’s going on?
Presenter: Professor Joaquim Segales (University Autònomo de Barcelona, Spain) The immune system of the pig plays a key role in controlling infection by porcine circovirus type 2 (PCV2), keeping it as subclinical in most cases. However, a variable proportion of pigs in a farm may develop postweaning multisystemic wasting syndrome (PMWS), a multifactorial acquired immune deficiency syndrome. Regrettably, the knowledge on the precise immunological mechanisms by which a pig gets a subclinical infection or develops PMWS is still poorly known. Curiously, PCV2 vaccines seem to be extremely efficacious in controlling the disease. The objective of this presentation was to summarise the current knowledge on PCV2 immunology and the immunological basis of PCV2 vaccination.