Submitted to: National Hog Farmer
Publication Type: Popular Publication
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/4/2003
Publication Date: 12/15/2003
Citation: LUNNEY, J.K. GENETIC COMPONENTS OF IMMUNITY AND DISEASE RESISTANCE. NATIONAL HOG FARMER. April 15, 2003. pp. 30-34.
Technical Abstract: This review introduces pork producers to the complexities of mapping genes involved in immune and vaccine responses. It points out that there are few success stories in mapping genes that encode true disease resitance in pigs despite the fact that studies targeting the genetics of disease resistance are essential for improved pork quality. As scientists identify breeding stock that is healthier, by virtue of its innate disease resistance properties, they will also help decrease our dependence on antibiotics. Studies which incorporate specific production parameters and nutritional concerns in their design will help producers select the breeding stock which possesses the necessary resistance parameters: higher respiratory disease resistance for indoor pigs, higher parasite resistance for outdoor pigs. There is an enormous benefit that will come from such studies. There is great potential for genetic studies of disease resistance to reveal novel host effector mechanisms that will lead to new biotherapeutic approaches and cost-effective control mechanisms.