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Proliferative enteropathy: a global enteric disease of pigs caused by Lawsonia intracellularis

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 March 2007

Jeremy J. Kroll*
Affiliation:
Department of Research and Development, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica Inc., 2501 North Loop Drive, Ames, IA 50010, USA
Michael B. Roof
Affiliation:
Department of Research and Development, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica Inc., 2501 North Loop Drive, Ames, IA 50010, USA
Lorraine J. Hoffman
Affiliation:
Veterinary Diagnostic and Production Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
James S. Dickson
Affiliation:
Department of Animal Science, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
D. L. Hank Harris
Affiliation:
Department of Microbiology, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA
*
*Corresponding author: Email: jkroll@bi-vetmedica.com

Abstract

Proliferative enteropathy (PE; ileitis) is a common intestinal disease affecting susceptible pigs raised under various management systems around the world. Major developments in the understanding of PE and its causative agent, Lawsonia intracellularis, have occurred that have led to advances in the detection of this disease and methods to control and prevent it. Diagnostic tools that have improved overall detection and early onset of PE in pigs include various serological and molecular-based assays. Histological tests such as immunohistochemistry continue to be the gold standard in confirming Lawsonia-specific lesions in pigs post mortem. Despite extreme difficulties in isolating L. intracellularis, innovations in the cultivation and the development of pure culture challenge models, have opened doors to better characterization of the pathogenesis of PE through in vivo and in vitro L. intracellularis–host interactions. Advancements in molecular research such as the genetic sequencing of the entire Lawsonia genome have provided ways to identify various immunogens, metabolic pathways and methods for understanding the epidemiology of this organism. The determinations of immunological responsiveness in pigs to virulent and attenuated isolates of L. intracellularis and identification of various immunogens have led to progress in vaccine development.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © CAB International 2005

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