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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2023

Assessment of control measures against livestock-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in a farrow-to-finish pig herd using infectious disease modelling

Tuominen, K. S.; Lewerin, S. Sternberg; Widgren, S.; Rosendal, T.

Abstract

Pigs are considered to be the main reservoir for livestock-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (LA-MRSA), which is a zoonotic opportunistic pathogen. As LA-MRSA is an occupational hazard, there is an incentive to control its spread in pig herds. Currently, knowledge about effective control measures which do not require culling the whole herd are limited, and the control strategies against LA-MRSA vary between countries. This study uses a stochastic compartment model to simulate possible control measures for LA-MRSA in a farrow-to-finish pig herd. The aims of the study were to (1) extend a previously published disease spread model with additional management and control measures; (2) use the extended model to study the effect of the individual LA-MRSA control measures on the within-herd LA-MRSA prevalence; (3) evaluate the effect of control measures when they are implemented in combinations. From the individual control measures tested in the study, thorough cleaning was found to be most effective in reducing the LA-MRSA prevalence in the herd. When the different control measures were combined, cleaning together with disease surveillance had the largest impact on reducing the LA-MRSA and a higher chance of causing disease elimination. The results of the study showed that achieving disease elimination once LA-MRSA had been introduced in the herd was challenging but was more likely when control measures were introduced early during the outbreak. This emphasises the importance of early detection of the pathogen and subsequent rapid implementation of LA-MRSA control measures.(c) 2023 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of The Animal Consortium. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

Keywords

Biosecurity; Disease eradication; Environmental transmission; Swine; Veterinary epidemiology

Published in

Animal
2023, Volume: 17, number: 6, article number: 100840
Publisher: ELSEVIER