K-State researcher looks at ASF transmission


K-State researcher looks at ASF transmission

A Kansas State University researcher is developing tools to help U.S. pig farmers in the fight against African Swine Fever. 

Megan Niederwerder says she’s researching how ASF would survive and transmit after it’s been detected on a U.S. farm. “What do we need to put in place? What protocols? What strategies? What tools do we have? If the virus enters the country for the most rapid eradication and elimination of the virus from the country and of course from the farm.”  

She received a $513,000 two-year grant from the National Pork Board and the State of Kansas National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility Fund.  She says it will complement other ASF research that her department is conducting.

She tells Brownfield they hope to develop easy-to-use solutions allowing farmers to quickly eliminate and eradicate the virus should it enter their herd. “Can we use certain disinfectants? Do we need to use heat to eliminate the virus? We want to maintain a negative environment, so you have to be concerned about eliminating the virus from the pigs and from the environment.”

Niederwerder’s research also focuses on preventing ASF from reaching the U.S and includes determining the risk and mitigation of potential virus introduction routes, such as imported feed ingredients.

Megan Niederwerder: