Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) causes acute diarrhea, dehydration in pigs, and high mortality rates in piglets <3 weeks of age. Maternal immunity protects piglets, but information on vaccination before or after natural infection in endemically exposed sow herds is limited. Currently, the recovery goal in sow units infected with PEDV is to become fully naive again or use natural virus infection to develop immune gilts through a feedback program before introduction into the sow herd. Since neutralizing antibodies in the gut are critical for protection against enteric viral infections such as PEDV, we evaluated the effect of a conditionally licensed, adjuvanted inactivated PEDV vaccine on neutralizing antibody levels in milk and colostrum in both naive and previously naturally exposed sow herds. The results illustrate that intramuscular vaccination increased neutralizing antibody titers, and anti-PEDV IgA and IgG in milk and colostrum of sows that were previously infected. Thus, inactivated PEDV vaccines may provide increased protection to piglets nursing on previously infected sows against exposure to PEDV through increased delivery of lactogenic neutralizing antibodies to the enteric site of infection.
- maternal immunity