To gain insight into the rapid increase in the number of livestock-associated Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (LA-MRSA)-positive herds in Denmark, we developed an individual-based Monte Carlo simulation model. We aimed to assess whether transmission of LA-MRSA via pig movements could explain the observed increase in the number of positive herds in Denmark, and to evaluate the effect of other between-herd transmission mechanisms. Pig movements alone were not sufficient to mimic the observed increase in LA-MRSA-positive herds in Denmark in any of the modelled scenarios. The model identified three factors that played important roles in the between-herd spread of LA-MRSA: (1) the within-herd dynamics, (2) the frequency and effectiveness of indirect transmissions, and (3) unexplainable introduction of LA-MRSA to swine herds. These factors can act as starting points for the development of LA-MRSA control programs in pig herds in order to limit the risk of its transmission to humans.
Schulz, J., Boklund, A., Toft, N., & Halasa, T. (2018). Drivers for Livestock-Associated Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Spread Among Danish Pig Herds - A Simulation Study. Scientific Reports, 8, . https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-018-34951-1