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Experimental models of porcine post-weaning colibacillosis and their relationship to post-weaning diarrhoea and digestive disorders as encountered in the field

Madec, F., Bridoux, N., Bounaix, S., Cariolet, R., Duval-Iflah, Y., Hampson, D.J. and Jestin, A. (2000) Experimental models of porcine post-weaning colibacillosis and their relationship to post-weaning diarrhoea and digestive disorders as encountered in the field. Veterinary Microbiology, 72 (3-4). pp. 295-310.

Link to Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0378-1135(99)00202-3
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Abstract

The aim of this study was to develop a reliable model system of porcine post-weaning colibacillosis, and in doing so to assess the primary relationship of enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli to post-weaning diarrhoea and digestive disorders as encountered in the field. Six sequential experiments were carried out using 168 SPF piglets weaned into an optimal controlled environment at 28 days of age. The piglets were allocated to 23 treatment groups, 17 of which were inoculated either orally or intragastrically with enterotoxigenic strains of E. coli (LT+, STI+, STII+) possessing adhesive factors including K88 (F4). The piglets were challenged either once (Day 4 post-weaning) or on several days post-weaning, with the challenge load for each inoculation varying from 108 to 1012 CFU. Overall 14.5% of inoculated pigs developed severe illness and died: these had lesions in their digestive tracts typical of colibacillosis. Diarrhoea occurred on at least 1 day in 50% of inoculated pigs, but was transient (1.7 days on average), appeared very soon after challenge (sometimes within half a day), and was accompanied by signs of depression and low weight gain. Generally a prompt recovery then occurred. In the second 2 weeks post-inoculation daily weight gain reached the same level in most inoculated groups of pigs as in the uninoculated controls. Only a small number of pigs developed a chronic enteritis lasting several days, as is typically observed in field cases. Diarrhoea was more common in the piglets that were tested adhesive positive to the K88 fimbriae receptor, but the disorders were no more severe in these animals. The response of all pigs depended primarily on the inoculum used, and especially on the challenge load. Although enterotoxigenic E. coli are clearly important in the aetiology of post-weaning diarrhoea, other factors are also required for the production of the chronic post-weaning digestive disorders and ill-thrift that are commonly encountered in commercial piggeries.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Copyright: © 2000 Elsevier Science B.V.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/13230
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