The bovine viral diarrhea (BVD) virus, and related viruses in the “pestivirus” classification, cause considerable economic damage through reproductive losses in cow herds and as a contributor to bovine respiratory disease (BRD) in feedyards.

Transmission of the virus, and its introduction into herds, typically is associated with the presence of persistently infected (PI) calves, which are relatively uncommon, preventable and can be identified through diagnostic testing. So could the U.S. beef industry eradicate the disease? A pair of upcoming conference will explore that possibility, along with current science of BVD diagnostics, prevention and control.

On October 13 in Kansas City, the Kansas State Diagnostic Laboratory, Life Technologies and Merck Animal Health will sponsor a conference titled “Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus Eradication: Reality or Myth?” That conference precedes the 2014 BVDV/ESVV Pestivirus Symposium, titled “Pestiviruses: Old Enemies, New Challenges,” scheduled for October 14 and 15.

While the two conferences will take place consecutively in the same hotel, each has its own registration.

The BVDV eradication conference will feature the following presentations.

  • BVDV Epidemiology and Economic Impact: The science and economics of why we can and need to eradicate BVDV. Dr. John VanLeeuwen, University of Prince Edward Island, Canada
  • BVDV Eradication: Vaccination and Diagnostics, Where do producers start? Dr. Tom Shelton, Merck Animal Health
  • BVDV Diagnostic Options for Practitioners and Producers: How KSVDL offers guidance for using PCR to prevent and control BVDV on US beef operations. Dr. Gregg Hanzlicek, Kansas State Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory
  • BVDV Regional Eradication Success: Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Dr. Dan Grooms, Michigan State University
  • Keeping BVDV Out: Proactive detection of HoBi-Like virus with Real-time PCR. Dr. Johnny Callahan, Life Technologies / Simone Silveira – Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Brasil (UFRGS)
  • Beef and dairy operation BVDV bio-security vulnerability points. Dr. Dan Thomson, Kansas State University

Online registration is available for Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus Eradication: Reality or Myth?

Beginning the next day, the joint 2014 BVDV/ESVV Pestivirus Symposium is a collaboration between a consortium of U.S. researchers organized five BVD symposia held at three-year intervals, and the European Society of Veterinary Virology, which has held a series of eight symposia focusing on characterization and control of pestivirus infections including BVDV. This is the first time that the two groups have joined together to organize a joint symposium.

This joint meeting, to be held will feature talks by researchers from North America, South America, Australia and Europe. It will be divided into three sessions focusing on the latest research in the following areas:

  • Pestiviruses and the Immune System
  • Genetic Variability and Evolution of the Known Pestiviruses
  • "Old" Pestiviruses in New Hosts and the Emergence of New Pestiviruses

The full agenda and registration information are available on the U.S. Animal Health Association website