Though no accurate report is available, it is estimated that approximately 90 to 95 % of pigs in conventional herds are treated with antimicrobials. Treatment is often initiated in order to treat omphalitis and prevent various sequelae caused by bacteria like, e.g. umbilical herniation, sepsis, meningitis and arthritis. It is important to clarify the presence and causes of lesions to avoid unnecessary treatment with antimicrobials. Prudent use of antimicrobials is imperative to prevent antimicrobial resistance.
The study is a part of the ‘Veterinærforlig III’-project and an ongoing PhD-project. It is designed as a longitudinal observational study including 2 herds and approximately 80 pigs. The aim of this study is to evaluate lesions in the umbilical area, and elucidate (potential) causative pathogens, and derived lesions of omphalitis in pigs. Histological sections from the umbilical area, meninges, and the synovial membrane from the left elbow joint of the pigs will be evaluated. Furthermore, immunohistochemistry and in situ hybridization will be used to identify/localize different pathogens in the tissues. In the master-project, the students will screen the sections for lesions and selected tissues for specific pathogens by various antibodies and probes, and relate the results to the presence of pathomorphological lesions.