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  Home > Events > Allen D. Leman Swine Conference > Pre-Conference Program

Pre-Conference Program


University of Alberta-University of Minnesota Reproduction Workshop: 
Overhauling Reproductive Management in a Commercial Setting 
8:15 AM - 4:45 PM; 7.5 CE Credits
Room 13-14
$200 through August 19, $250 starting August 20, lunch included
Limited Space: 130 participants
Chair - Dr. Michael Dyck, University of Alberta

The series of collaborative Reproduction Workshops at the Leman Conference continues. This year, Michael Dyck (Swine Reproduction-Development Program, University of Alberta) will facilitate the workshop.

  • Welcome - Dr. Michael Dyck, University of Alberta
  • Litter of Origin Effects on Gilt Development - George Foxcroft, KinFox  
  • Gilt Diets, Growth and Reproductive Development - Julia A Calderon-Diaz, Iowa State University
  • PG600 and Gilt Performance - Jenny Patterson, University of Alberta
  • Use of Progesterone Assays to Determine Reproductive Status - Francisco De Grau
  • Biological Markers of Boar Fertility - Michael Dyck, University of Alberta
  • Use of Porceptal to Control Ovulation - Miquel Collell, Merck Animal Health
  • Closing Remarks - Dr. Michael Dyck, University of Alberta

From Geeks to Geeks: principles and applications of molecular epidemiology
8:00 AM - 12:00 PM
; 4 CE Credits
Room 10
$130 through August 19, $175 starting August 20
Limited Space: 50 participants
Chair-Dr. Andres Perez, University of Minnesota

Background: This workshop provides participants with an introduction to the molecular epidemiology of pathogens, and with guidelines for conducting molecular epidemiology studies. Combining theory with examples for a wide variety of pathogens, this workshop aims to further the participants’ understanding of the application of molecular epidemiology. Course participants will acquire skills to plan, analyze, and interpret the results of such studies. This course will be of interest to anyone whose work involves the application, analysis, and interpretation of epidemiological studies that utilize molecular tools. The proposal for this workshop builds on the activities of mEpiworks, a molecular epidemiology working group, which was funded in 2009 and which now includes more than 400 people from all over the world. Members of the teaching team have previously presented a variety of similar or related workshops and courses in Australia, Belgium, Canada, Italy, Switzerland, New Zealand and Germany. The mEpiworks webpage is now hosted by the University of Minnesota STEMMA (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics for Minnesota Advancement) program (

Tentative program:

  • Key principles of analysis and interpretation - Dr. Andres Perez
  • Molecular epidemiology of coronaviruses - Dr. Douglas Marthaler
  • Molecular epidemiology of influenzaviruses - Drs. Montserrat Torremorell and Andres Diaz
  • Antigenic mapping and its application to FMDV - Dr. Franciosi Maree
  • Molecular epidemiology of PRRSV - Dr. Xiong Wang
  • Molecular epidemiology of bacterial diseases - Dr. Julio Alvarez

Epidemiology of foot-and-mouth disease in swine
1:00 P - 5:00 PM; 4 CE Credits
Room 10
$130 through August 19, $175 starting August 20
Limited Space: 50 participants
Chair-Dr. Andres Perez, University of Minnesota

Background: Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is arguably one of the most feared foreign animal diseases. An outbreak of FMD in the U.S. could cause devastating economic losses due to response efforts, animal losses and trade restrictions. Therefore, developing effective responses to FMD is imperative to lessen the significant animal welfare, social and economic impacts that can result from an outbreak. The World Animal Health Organization (OIE) recommended zoning and compartmentalization as the two strategies for the identification and characterization of risk (OIE, 2013). Zoning refers to the geographical delimitation of regions where herds are considered to be at similar risk for the disease based on the presence or absence of factors that promote or prevent the occurrence of the disease. Compartmentalization refers to the delimitation of groups of herds at similar risk based upon management factors, which includes the nature and frequency of contacts among herds and associated biosecurity measures. At both the global and national levels, the OIE and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), respectively, have addressed the concept of incorporating ‘compartmentalization’ into an effective and internationally acceptable FAD response. By so doing, they have given recognition to the concept of that, within modern animal production; there exist subpopulations (e.g. nucleus and multiplier flows within breeding stock systems & defined commercial multisite production systems) that have effectively maintained stable health statuses due to robust biosecurity considerations and implementation programs. They also recognize that it may be possible to facilitate ongoing business operations (i.e. continuity of business) during a FAD outbreak by allowing ‘compartments’, ‘subpopulations’, or health pyramids, that have historically demonstrated a stable health status, to continue their normal movements as long as they can demonstrate this status to regulatory officials.

In this workshop, we will first review the clinical and epidemiological features of FMD outbreaks suffered in Taiwan, the UK, and Japan. We will then review the strategies of compartmentalization and zoning approved by the USDA and the OIE. Finally, we will introduce a NPB and CEEZAD-funded project led by the University of Minnesota, intended to model the impact and identify effective strategies for controlling a hypothetical FMD epidemic in swine in the U.S.

Tentative program:

  • Experimental work with FMD in swine in the U.S. - Dr. Luis Rodriguez
  • FMD in swine: lessons learned in the UK, Taiwan and Japan - Dr. Terry Wilson
  • Strategies to control FMD. OIE rules and applications to swine - Dr. Sergio Duffy
  • USDA’s FMD Surveillance Plan. Dr. Troy Bigelow
  • Novel vaccines strategies for the control of FMD in Africa. Dr. Francois Maree
  • Modeling FMD spread in U.S. swine farms - Drs. Amy Kinsley and Kimberly VanderWaal

Telepathology: introduction and application for global swine diagnostics training and service
2:00 PM - 5:00 PM; 3 CE Credits
Room 15
$130 through August 19, $175 starting August 20
Limited Space: 50 participants
Chair-Dr. Fabio Vannucci, University of Minnesota

Background: The objective of this workshop is to provide an introduction to the practice of pathology at the distance by offering unique opportunities for swine diagnostic training and service worldwide. Attendees will participate and interact with pathologists in a web-based live training session which will be transmitted from the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory (UMN-VDL). The course includes necropsy, sample collection, macro- and microscopic evaluation of clinical cases submitted to UMN-VDL. The participants will be encouraged to discuss clinical, pathological and laboratory findings. In addition, conclusions will be discussed and potential recommendations will be proposed for the selected cases. The workshop will be interesting to veterinary practitioners, diagnosticians, scientists and any professional directly or indirectly involved in the swine industry. The course is part of the activities lead by the UMN-VDL included in the International Telepathology Partnership to Improve Pathology Training for Swine Diagnostics.

Tentative program
Telepathology: Principles and application – Dr. Jim Collins/Dr. Ann Fitzpatrick
Necropsy and sample collection (web-based) – Dr. Fabio Vannucci/Dr. Stephanie Rossow
Case studies: macro, micro and lab findings (web-based) – Dr. Fabio Vannucci/Dr. Stephanie Rossow
Case studies: Brainstorming and conclusions – Dr. Fabio Vannucci/Dr. Stephanie Rossow

Note: A tour through the grossing and microscope telepathology units in the VDL facilities will be available for participants upon request (schedule TBD).

Brazilian Symposium: Epidemiological Tools to Understand and Control Infectious Diseases in Swine (session in Portuguese)
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM; 2.0 CE Credits
Room 13-14
No cost
Limited Space: 130 participants
Chairs-Drs. Daniel Linhares and Fabio Vannucci

Tentative program:

  • Keynote: Principles of spatial and risk analysis applied to infectious diseases in swine - Global experiences -Dr. Andres Perez   
  • Challenges and opportunities to use spatial and risk analysis in the Brazillian swine industry - Recent experience with vesicular disease - Dr Daniel Linhares
  • Diagnosis: The basis to apply and interpret spatial and risk analysis - Dr. Fabio Vannucci


Carlos Pijoan SDEC Symposium
Gilt Acclimation
8:30 AM - 3:00 PM
; 5 CE Credits
Room 13-14
$200 through August 12, $250 starting August 20, lunch included
Limited Space: 130 participants
Chair-Dr. Montserrat Torremorell

Background-The goal of gilt acclimatization programs is to prepare females to optimize their productivity as sows. Many factors need to be taken in consideration including nutrition, reproduction, housing, welfare and health. Health of the gilts is particularly important since it will drive the level of health stability in the breeding herd. However, acclimatizing for health is complex given the numerous diseases present in the herds and the complexity of the protocols we employ. In this workshop we will discuss gilt acclimatization from the point of view of health. We will have a combination of general presentations directed at understanding how health challenges impact gilt development and what disease dynamics take place in the gilt development unit. We will also have disease specific presentations for the diseases of interest including PRRSV, PEDV, Mycoplasmas and flu with key take home messages to implement and practices to challenge. A must attend workshop for those who seek to maximize breeding herd stability.

Tentative program:

How health challenges impact gilt development – Noel Williams
Adverse effects of disease events on the dynamics of gilt selection programs and possible management responses – George Foxcroft
Disease transmission dynamics in the gilt development unit: what we know, don’t know and should consider – Matt Allerson
Programs and targets for PRRSV acclimatization for integrated (large) companies – Clayton Johnson
What do you need to know for successful Mycoplasmas acclimatization – Maria Pieters
A first step into a standard protocol for Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae gilt acclimation – Luiza Ribeiro
Acclimatization for PED – Luc Dufresne
Lactogenic protection against PED virus in piglets following homologous challenge - Adam Schelkopf
Should we care about flu acclimatization? Role of gilts in flu infection – Mark Wagner
Effectively integrating health protocols with reproductive management – Juan Carlos Pinilla
Panel Discussion

Advanced Hedging Strategies for Today's Swine Industry
1:00 PM- 5:00 PM
; 4.0 CE Credits
Room 10
$130 through August 19, $175 starting August 20
Limited Space: 30 participants
Chair - Mr. Pat VonTersch, Professional Ag Marketing, Luverne, MN

This session will provide attendees the opportunity to work with hog margin risk management analysis. We will review the history on hog margin management vs. other alternatives. We will also discuss what opportunities will be presented in the future as it relates hog margin management; and what is happening fundamentally in hog, corn and meal markets. This session will be interactive so be pleased be prepared to have an open discussion about risk management.

Mr. Pat VonTersch, Professional Ag Marketing

Get to Know the Chinese Swine Industry (session in Chinese)
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM; 3.0 CE Credits
Room 15
No cost
Limited Space: 130 participants
Chair-Dr. Frank Liu, University of Minnesota

Dr. Frank Liu, University of Minnesota

This session is targeting Chinese participants and participants who have an interest in learning about pig production industry in China. Presentations will be given by graduate students and scholars who are from China and currently studying or working in the US in the areas of pig production. The session will provide a good opportunity for our graduate students to meet and interact with swine researchers, major swine producers, and international pharmaceutical companies with operations in China.  

Research Highlights
2:30-4:30 PM;
2 CE Credits
Room 9
No Cost
Chair-Dr. Maria Pieters

Join us for this inaugural session in which the best research abstracts submitted to the Leman Conference will be presented orally. Abstracts to be presented will be selected by a scientific committee based on outstanding research quality and relevance, and will be related to various aspects of swine medicine and production. This will be a great opportunity to get up-to-date with the latest information and stay on the Science Driven Solutions path.


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