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What people who raise pigs need to know about influenza (flu)
  • Published Date:
    January 2012
  • Language:
Filetype[PDF-635.16 KB]

  • Description:
    Influenza virus infections in pigs -- Questions & answers about influenza in pigs -- The flu can spread from pigs to people and from people to pigs -- Prevent the spread of flu viruses between people and pigs.

    As someone who raises pigs, whether for show (e.g. 4-H or Future Farmers of America [FFA]) or as part of a farming operation (i.e. commercial pork producer), you may have questions about influenza (the flu) in both pigs and people. This document addresses what is known about flu viruses in pigs and people and what people in contact with pigs can do to reduce the risk of getting sick or of getting their pigs sick.

    There are many causes of respiratory disease in pigs, including influenza. Among influenza types, only type A influenza viruses are known to infect pigs. Although pigs and people now share the H1N1 pandemic virus, other viruses circulating in swine are different from viruses circulating in people. At this time, there are three main flu A viruses that circulate in U.S. pigs: influenza A H1N1, influenza A H1N2 and influenza A H3N2. These viruses do not usually infect people and are genetically different from the H1N1 and H3N2 viruses that commonly circulate in people. When swine flu viruses are very different from the human flu viruses causing illness in people, people may have little to no immune protection against these swine viruses. Also human flu vaccines probably would not offer protection against the viruses that are found in pigs.

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