AHL LabNote 30-Undifferentiated diarrhea in pigs, including PEDV and PDCoV testing at the AHL

ahlinfo@uoguelph.ca 519-824-4120 ext 54530  Updated April 2020

The AHL encourages veterinarians to submit samples from any cases of undifferentiated diarrhea.

We recommend that the triplex porcine coronavirus PCR for PEDV, TGEV, PDCoV (deltacoronavirus) be done BEFORE submitting animals to the lab for postmortem where diarrhea is a clinical sign.

Submissions for pigs with vomiting and diarrhea should include the samples listed below. Take gut samples as soon as possible after euthanasia and place in formalin to achieve optimal TGEV IHC test performance.





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       (X 2)

     (X 3)


     (X 3)




     spiral colon

      (X 2)

     mesenteric LN



     other - liver, kidney, spleen, lung



     feces (leak-proof vial or swab),







     Routine histopathology

     IHC for TGEV, PCV-2


     Colon or feces (NO swabs) for Brachyspira spp., B. hyodysenteriae, B. pilosicoli, B. hampsonii clade I and B. hampsonii clade II PCR.

     Ileum or feces (NO swabs) for Lawsonia intracellularis PCR.

     Intestinal tissue/content, feces, or fecal/intestinal swabs for aerobic (E. coli and Salmonella spp.) and anaerobic (C. perfringens) culture.

    Feces or intestinal content (NO swabs) for C. difficile toxins ELISA. 


     Live - fecal swab in VTM (preferred) or feces - Porcine coronavirus PCR (PEDV, TGEV, PDCoV), porcine rotavirus A/B/C PCR. 

     Dead - PCV-2 PCR, rotavirus A/B/C PCR, porcine coronavirus PCR (PEDV, TGEV, PDCoV) on frozen small intestine or feces.


     PEDV ELISA and IFA are available at external laboratories and the AHL can send sera on request.

     Sera from dam, surviving litter/herdmates for differential TGEV/PRCV ELISA (does not detect PEDV antibodies).


     Fecal exam optional (histology can be diagnostic).

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