National Pork Board Releases RFP

The National Pork Board has released a request for proposals  in a variety of areas – including one for antimicrobial resistance. This looks like it might be a good opportunity to secure some funding for an area of great interest to the land-grant university system.

More information on the RFPs (format, deadlines, etc) can be found at:

The deadline for submitting proposals is Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. (CST). Please address any questions you might have to the point of contact listed in the announcement.

The RFP follows:

Public Health – Antibiotic Use & Resistance

The Producer/Public Health and Workplace Safety (PPHWS) Committee is soliciting proposals in the areas of Antibiotic Use and Resistance. The priorities (not listed in order of priority) and key concepts listed below were developed by a joint committee taskforce with producer and subject matter expert representation from each of the National Pork Board’s Science and Technology Committees.  The Board has dedicated $600,000 to this effort in 2017 however; there is no limit set for the amount of funding requested for individual proposals.

Proposals must be submitted in the attached format in order to be considered.  Projects may cover multiple-years for completion of an entire project.  However, proposals for multi-year projects are expected to detail project deliverables and budgets on a year-to-year basis. Regular interim reports are required for both single year and multi-year proposals.  Inclusion of preliminary data and evidence of cooperative funding is highly encouraged.  Proposals will be reviewed by panels of experts for scientific soundness and by pork producers for industry application.  Proposals may be returned to the investigator with suggested/requested revisions prior to final funding decisions.  Funding for accepted projects will follow final approval by the National Pork Board.  For information regarding this solicitation, please contact Dr. Dave Pyburn by Email ( or by phone at (515) 223-2634.

Proposals are solicited in these areas only.  Proposals submitted that do not adhere to these areas will not be considered further.

Below is a list of research areas to be addressed by the Antibiotic Use and Resistance research RFP.  Submitted proposals must bring fundamental knowledge and application for continuous improvement of antibiotic use best practices in the pork industry. Research in these areas will require a variety of disciplines and therefore proposals utilizing a multidisciplinary approach are highly encouraged.  Proposals should reference which priorities and key concepts listed below are being addressed.  Animal studies should be conducted in commercial-like conditions and with sufficient replication to make statistically appropriate conclusions.  Additionally, proposals should provide a power analysis to document and ensure sample size is adequate.  Nursery trials will be given higher consideration when subsequent finishing performance is monitored and carcass data collected. In order to be considered for funding, submitted proposals must show evidence of sufficient statistical power in relation to primary project objectives, clearly define the role of the study in meeting the objective to deliver cost effective outcomes technology, and address one or more of the following research priorities:


1) Alternatives to Antibiotics (Please Note: This is NOT solicitation for product development)

  • Evaluate alternative interventions to define therapeutic options in the weaning phase.
  • Assess the comparative efficacy (prevention, control, treatment) of products that may be used as substitution to antibiotics under controlled disease challenge. The current industry equivalent should be specified in the study.

2) Environmental Fate of Antibiotics

  • Evaluate the impact of manure storage pit additives on antibiotic residues/resistance in the manure excrement?
  • Assess the use of barn disinfectants as it relates to the potential selection of antibiotic resistance. Studies may also assess the advantages/disadvantages of rotating disinfectant options in barns.

3) Antibiotic Administration

  • Evaluate the amount of antibiotics used and route of administration in the nursery phase in terms of antibiotic efficacy and likelihood of selection for antibiotic resistance.
  • Assess the use of injectable antibiotic regimens in preweaned piglets on ultimate antibiotic need and potential impacts on the development immunity.
  • Evaluate or compare efficacy of current treatment regimens of water antibiotics or injectable antibiotics during coinfections.

4) Mitigations

  • Demonstrate the value of prevention uses of antibiotics versus treatment uses.
  • Evaluate basic mechanisms for bacterial vaccine development. It is important to understand that this is NOT solicitation for product development.
  • Identify and characterize genetic markers for diseases of importance in swine production that currently require antibiotic treatment, directly, or indirectly due to coinfection.

Further Information

  • Preference will be given to projects that involve multi-disciplinary approaches that may include academic and commercial collaborations, except where discovery is needed to establish principles necessary for additional research.
  • Projects spanning more than one year are not discouraged so that a project is provided sufficient time to deliver desirable outcomes.  However, funding of a multi-year project must be justified, with second and third year funding being dependent on sufficient progress of the prior year
  • A description of methods to assess the potential economic impact of widespread adoption of the research conclusion on the swine industry should be included in each proposal.  This may necessitate the inclusion of an agriculture economist on the research team.
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