CanSpotASF reminder

Josepha DeLay, Jim Fairles

Animal Health Laboratory, University of Guelph, Guelph, ON

AHL Newsletter 2022;26(1):12.

The Animal Health Laboratory continues to test appropriate swine cases under the CanSpotASF surveillance program.  Eligible cases are those for which African swine fever is not a differential diagnosis.  If ASF is considered as a differential diagnosis, then CFIA must be contacted immediately.

To qualify for CanSpotASF surveillance testing, cases must have herd location information available (PID or physical address), and submit fresh spleen, tonsil, kidney, lymph node, terminal ileum, or serum for testing.  Only these samples are appropriate for the CanSpotASF surveillance program.

Please note – the program has been updated so that pathology and non-pathology cases can be included in the program as long as they meet the presentations eligible for CanSpotASF testing.  Practitioners may now submit directly as part of a case without pathology testing (postmortem and/or histopathology) required.  Please note all criteria that apply in the history.

To facilitate the success of this ASF surveillance, veterinarians should:

  • submit fresh spleen, tonsil, kidney, lymph node, terminal ileum, or serum
  • include a thorough clinical history with each case
  • ensure that the herd PID or physical address is included
  • for pathology cases - please respond to pathologists’ requests for permission for surveillance testing if blanket approval has not been provided ahead of time                                                                                                                                                                                                          ​​                                                                         

Clinicopathological presentations eligible for CanSpotASF testing:

  1. Septicemia and / or multiorgan hemorrhage such as caused by E. rhusiopathiae; S. suis; S. zooepidermicus; A. suis; S. Cholerasuis; other bacteria
  2. Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome virus (PRRS), especially when it causes cyanotic skin
  3. Porcine dermatitis and nephropathy syndrome (PDNS) and vasculitis that can be caused by PCV2, PCV3 or other pathogens
  4. Hemorrhagic diarrhea / necrotizing enterocolitis such as caused by Salmonella spp.;                    L. intracellularis; B. hyodysenteriae; B. hampsonii
  5. Fibrinous pleuritis / pericarditis / hydropericardium such as caused by H. parasuis (now G.         parasuis); S. suis
  6. Mulberry heart disease
  7. Splenic torsion
  8. Abortion above historical trend for herd
  9. Mortality above historical trend for herd

Please contact Jim Fairles ( or your case pathologist with any questions about the CanSpotASF program and the submission process.  

Thank you for contributing to enhanced ASF surveillance!   AHL