Sample Collection Suggestions for PRRSV PCR Samples

Samples to be tested for PRRSV by PCR should be submitted as serum or blood swabs to improve early detection of PRRSV exposure. Note that PRRSV exposure detection rate at day 1 and 2 is 95% from ear prick blood swab versus a 10% detection rate in semen1. Sampling suggestions follow, blood swab collection methodology as recommended by Dr. Darwin Reicks2.

Blood swab collection kits available through Gallant Custom Laboratories.

Serum Collection  Blood Swab Collection
Thoroughly wipe and clean skin using an alcohol wipe around the boars’s ear vein. Use new wipe on every boar. Thoroughly wipe and clean skin using an alcohol wipe around the boar’s ear vein. Use new wipe on every boar.
Wear disposable latex gloves for blood collection, changing gloves between boars. Use a sterile needle and vacutainer tube without anticoagulant to collect blood from the boar’s ear vein while boar is ejaculating. Wear disposable latex gloves for blood collection, changing gloves between boars. Use a needle to prick into the boar’s ear vein while boar is ejaculating.
Centrifuge sample to separate serum from blood cells. Collect serum into a sterile tube. Soak blood into swab until swab is saturated. High volume blood swabs are recommended for this process. Insert swab into tube containing 0.5 mL of sterile saline, breaking of the shaft so that tube can be closed.
Securely close tube. Identify tubes to match enclosed submission form. Securely close tube. Identify tubes to match enclosed submission form.
Place blood tubes in shipper with ice packs. Submit to diagnostic laboratory by same day or overnight delivery. Place blood tubes in shipper with ice packs. Submit to diagnostic laboratory by same day or overnight delivery.

(1) Sanford, SE. DVM, Diplomat Path., Diplomat ACVP, Breaking down the barriers to quick boar stud testing for PRRS. Better Pork (Internet). April 2005. Available from http://www.betterfarming.com/bp/apr05
(2) Reicks, D. DVM, An overview of blood collection strategies for boar stud. 2005 Allen D. Leman Swine Conference