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Robert Friendship

Professor   |   DVM, MSc (Guelph)

Profile

My principal areas of interest are swine health management, disease surveillance and pre-harvest aspects of food safety. I teach in the undergrad DVM program and the graduate program. I am the swine research co-ordinator for the University of Guelph, and serve on the OVC admissions committee and the Population Medicine grad studies committee and promotion and tenure committee.

Research Interests

  • Sow reproduction and longevity- methods to synchronize ovulation, and techniques to stimulate synchronized estrus in gilts
  • Public health –On-farm control of Salmonella, prevalence of MRSA and influenza and Streptococcus suis and other zoonotic pathogens on pig farms, as well as antimicrobial resistance
  • Interaction of enteric diseases and nutritional factors
  • Surveillance and epidemiology of swine diseases

Teaching

  • Swine health management components of clinical medicine courses in the undergraduate veterinary curriculum and a graduate course in swine health management.
  • At present I am an advisor or co-advisor for 8 graduate students

Professional Experience & Honours

I have been awarded the Howard Dunne Memorial Award in 2003 by the American Association of Swine Veterinarians for outstanding service to the AASV and the swine industry, a University of Guelph Distinguished Professor Award for teaching excellence in 2006, and the Pfizer Award for research excellence in 2011.

Selected Publications

Recent publications grouped according to general areas of interest:

Digestive System and Enteric Disease

Friendship RM. Gastrointestinal Ulcers in Large Animals: Gastric Ulcers in Pigs in Merck Veterinary Manual (available on-line) 2014.

Thomson J., Friendship R. Digestive System in Diseases of Swine, Tenth Edition , edited by Zimmerman J., Karriker L., Ramirez, A., Schwartz, K., Stevenson G. Pub. by John Wiley and Sons, Hoboken N.J. 2012, pp. 199-226.

Chan G, Farzan A, DeLay J, McEwen B, Prescott J, Friendship R. A retrospective study of the etiological diagnoses of diarrhea in neonatal piglets between 2001 and 2010. Can J Vet Res. 2013, 77:254-261.

Chan G, Farzan A, Prescott JF, Friendship RM. How do swine practitioners and veterinary pathologists arrive at a diagnosis of Clostridium perfringens type A enteritis in neonatal piglets? Can Vet J. 2013, 54: 504-506.

Chan G, Farzan A, Soltes G, Nicholson V, Pei Y, Friendship R, Prescott J. The epidemiology of Beta2-carrying Clostridium perfringens Type A on Ontario swine farms. BioMed Central Vet Res 8:156, 2012. DOI:10.1186/1746-6148-8-156 URL: http://www.biomedcentral.com/1746-6148/8/156

Yin F, A Farzan, Q Wang, H Yu, Y Yin, Y Hou, R Friendship, J Gong. Reduction of Salmonella Typhimurium DT104 infection in experimentally-challenged weaned pigs fed a Lactobacillus-fermented diet. Foodborne Path Dis. 2014.11: 628-634.

Farzan A, Kircanski J, DeLay J, Soltes G, Songer G, Friendship R, Prescott J. An investigation into the association between cpb2-encoding Clostridium perfringens type A and diarrhea in neonatal piglets Can J Vet Res. 2013. 77:45–53.

Bertolo L, Boncheff AG, Ma Z, Chen Y-H, Wakefield T, Friendship R, Rosseau J, Weese JS, Chu M, Mallozzi, M, Vedantam G, Monteiro MA. Clostridium difficile carbohydrates: glucan in spores, PSII common antigen in cells, immunogenicity of PSII in swine and synthesis of a dual C. difficile-ETEC conjugate vaccine. Carbohydrate Research 354: 79-86, 2012.

Sow Performance and Reproduction

Friendship RM, O’Sullivan T. Sow Health in The Gestating and Lactating Sow, edited by Chantal Farmer. Wageningen Academic Publishers, 2015, pp. 409-421.

Amezcua MR, Walsh S, Luimes PH, Friendship RM. Infrared thermography to evaluate lameness in pregnant sows Can Vet J. 2014, 55: 268-272.

Hidalgo DM, Friendship RM, Greiner L, Manjarin R Amezcua MR, Dominguez JC Kirkwood RN. Influence of gonadotrophin-induced first estrus on gilt fertility when mating at a fixed breeding weight. Repro Dom Anim, 2014,49: 899–902.

Hidalgo DM, Friendship RM, Greiner L, Manjarin R Amezcua MR, Dominguez JC Kirkwood RN. Influence of lactation length and gonadotrophins administered at weaning on fertility of primiparous sows. Animal Reproduction Science 149 (2014), pp. 245-248.

Hidalgo DM, Cassar G, Manjarin R, Dominguez JC, Friendship RM, Kirkwood RN. Relationship between vaginal mucus conductivity and time of ovulation in weaned sows. Can J Vet Res 2015, 79: 151-154.

Manjarín R, Cassar G., Friendship R.M., Garcia J.C., Dominguez J.C., Hidalgo D.M., Kirkwood R.N. Effect of additional hCG on follicular growth and ovulation in PG600-treated gilts. Can J Vet Res 2015, 79: 210-213.

Manjarin R, Dominguez JC, Castro MJ, Sprecher DJ, Cassar G, Friendship RM, Kirkwood RN. Effect of hCG treatment on oestrous and ovulation responses to FSH in prepubertal gilts. Repro Dom Anim 44: 432-434. 2009.

Manjarin R, Cassar G, Sprecher DJ, Friendship RM, Dominguez JC, Kirkwood RN. Effect of eCG or eCG plus hCG on estrus expression and ovulation in prepubertal gilts. Reprod. Dom. Anim. 44: 411-413, 2009.

Manjarin R., J.C. Dominguez, M.J. Castro, B. Vallado, S. Rodriguez, D.J. Sprecher, G. Cassar, R.M. Friendship, R.N. Kirkwood. Effects of prior FSH treatment on the estrus and ovulation responses to eCG in prepubertal gilts. Anim Reprod Sci 110:123–127, 2009.

Cassar G., R.M. Friendship, L. Zak, and R.N. Kirkwood. Effect of eCG dose on the estrus responses of gilts and weaned sows and effect of the interval between eCG and pLH injections on sow performance. J Swine Health Prod. 18(4):182–186, 2010.

Diaz-Llano, G., T.K. Smith, H.E. Boermans, C. Caballero-Cortes and R. Friendship. Effects of feeding diets naturally contaminated with Fusarium mycotoxins on protein metabolism in late gestation and lactation of first-parity sows. J Anim Sci 88: 998-1008, 2010.

Ruiz A, Cassar G, Kirkwood RN, Friendship RM, Wilson ME, DeGrau AF. Influence of sperm cell concentration and seminal dose volume on sow fertility. The Pig Journal 63:80-82, 2010.

Cassar G, Kirkwood RN, Friendship RM. Low sow reproductive performance related to oestrus detection and timing of insemination. The Pig Journal. 62:7-9. 2009.

Pelland C, Cassar G, Kirkwood R, Friendship R. Fertility after intrauterine insemination with conventional or low numbers of spermatozoa in sows with synchronized ovulation. J Swine Health Prod. 16: 188-192, 2008.

Kang JH, Hakimov H, Ruiz A, Friendship R M, Buhr M, Golovan S. The negative effects of exogenous DNA binding on porcine spermatozoa are caused by removal of seminal. Theriogenology 70:1288-1296, 2008.

Nguyen K, Cassar G, Friendship R, Dewey C, Farzan A, Kirkwood RN. Stillbirth and preweaning mortality in litters of sows induced to farrow with supervision compared to litters of naturally farrowing sows with minimal supervision. J Swine Health Prod. 19(4): 214–217. 2011.

Nguyen K, Cassar G, Friendship R, Dewey C, Farzan A, Kirkwood R, Hodgins D. An investigation of the impacts of induced parturition, birth weight, birth order, litter size and sow parity on piglet serum concentrations of immunoglobulin G. J Swine Health Prod. 2013: 21:139-143.

Nursery Pig Performance and Disease

O’Sullivan TL, Harding JCS, Friendship R, Henry S, Madson D, Schwartz K. Estimated prevalence and impact of periweaning failure to thrive syndrome in Canada and the United States. J Swine Health Prod. 2014, 22:24-28.

 Slifierz M, Farzan A, DeLange CFM, Friendship RM, Weese JS. Immunomodulatory factors associated with the hepatic gene expression of insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), insulin-like growth factor binding protein-3 (IGFBP-3), and growth hormone receptor (GHR) in nursery pigs. Animal: An International Journal of Animal Bioscience. 2014, 27:1-8.

Slifierz M, Friendship R, DeLange CFM Rudar M, Farzan A. An epidemiological investigation into the association between biomarkers and growth performance in nursery pigs. BMC Veterinary Research 2013, 9:247.

Park J, Friendship RM, Poljak Z, DeLay J, Slavic D, Dewey C. An investigation of ear necrosis in pigs. Can Vet J. 2013, 54: 491-496.

Huang Y, Henry S, Friendship R, Schwartz K, Harding J. Clinical presentation, case definition and diagnostic guidelines for Porcine Periweaning Failure to Thrive Syndrome (PFTS). J Swine Health Prod. 2011, 19:340-344.

Tucker A, Farzan A, Cassar G, Friendship R. The evaluation of in-water iodine supplementation on weight gain, diarrhea and oral and dental health of nursery pigs. Can J Vet Res. 2011, 75: 292-297.

Tucker AL, Widowski TM, Friendship RM.. Associations between dental and oral conditions at weaning and future growth. J. Swine Health Prod. 2010, 18:68-74.

Tucker AL, Duncan IJH, Millman ST, Friendship RM, Widowski TM. The effect of dentition on feeding development in piglets and on their growth and behavior after weaning. J Anim Sci. 2010, 88:2277–2288.

Surveillance

Arruda AG, Poljak Z, Friendship R, Carpenter J, Hand K. Descriptive analysis and spatial epidemiology of porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS) for swine herds participating in area regional control and elimination programs from three different regions of Ontario, Canada. Can J Vet Res 2015 in press

Grgić H, Costa M, Friendship R, Carman S, Nagy E, Wideman G, Weese S, Poljak Z. Molecular characterization of H3N2 viruses from Ontario swine in 2011 and 2012. Virol J. 2014 22;11(1):194.

Arruda AG, Friendship R , Carpenter J, Hand K, Ojkic D, Poljak Z. Investigation of the occurrence of porcine reproductive and respiratory virus in swine herds participating in an area regional control and elimination project in Ontario, Canada. Transboundary and Emerging Disease, 2015. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/tbed.12343

Rosendal T, C Dewey, R Friendship, S Wootton, B Young, Z Poljak. Association between PRRSV ORF5 genetic distance and differences in space, time, ownership, and animal sources among commercial pig herds. Transboundary and Emerging Diseases.2015, http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/DOI/10.1111/tbed.12253

Rosendal T, Dewey C, Friendship R, Wootton S, Young B, Poljak Z. Association between genetic similarity of the PRRSV ORF5 sequence and the similarity in clinical signs of PRRS in Ontario swine herds. Can J Vet Res. 2014 78:250-259.

Thomas-Bachli AL, Pearl DL, Friendship RM, Berke O. Exploring relationships between whole carcass condemnation abattoir data, non-disease factors and disease outbreaks in swine herds in Ontario (2001–2007) BMC Research Notes 2014, 7:185.

O’Sullivan TL, Harding JCS, Friendship R, Henry S, Madson D, Schwartz K. Estimated prevalence and impact of periweaning failure to thrive syndrome in Canada and the United States. J Swine Health Prod. 2014, 22:24-28.

Glass-Kaastra S, Pearl DL, Reid-Smith R McEwen B, McEwen SA, Amezcua MR, Friendship RM. Describing antimicrobial use and reported treatment efficacy in Ontario swine using the Ontario Swine Veterinary-based Surveillance program. BMC Veterinary Research 2013, 9:238.

Bottoms KA, Poljak Z, Dewey C, Deardon R, Holtkamp D, Friendship RM. An assessment of external biosecurity on southern Ontario swine farms, and its application to surveillance on a geographic level. Can J Vet Res. 2013:77: 241-253.

Amezcua R. Pearl DL, Friendship RM. Comparison of disease trends in swine of Ontario using active practitioner-based surveillance and passive laboratory-based surveillance (2007-2009). Can Vet J. 2013, 54: 775-783.

O’Sullivan T, Friendship R, Pearl D, McEwen B, Dewey C. Identifying an outbreak of a novel swine disease using test requests for porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome as a syndromic surveillance tool. BioMed Central Vet Res.2012, 8:192. DOI: 10.1186/1746-6148-8-192

Bottoms KA, Poljak Z, Dewey C, Deardon R, Holtkamp D, Friendship RM. Evaluation of external biosecurity practices on southern Ontario sow farms. Prev Vet Med. 2013; 109: 58-68.

O’Sullivan T, Friendship R, Pearl D, McEwen B, Dewey C. The association between submission counts to a veterinary diagnostic laboratory and the economic and disease challenges of the Ontario swine industry from1998-2009. Prev Vet Med. 2012, 106: 275-283.

Thomas-Bachli AL, Pearl DL, Friendship RM, Berke O. Suitability and limitations of portion-specific abattoir data as part of an early warning system for emerging diseases of swine in Ontario. BMC Vet Res. 2012, 8(1):3.

O’Sullivan T, Friendship R, Pearl D, McEwen B, Carman S, Dewey C. Seroprevalence of Bovine Viral Diarrhea Virus neutralizing antibodies in finisher hogs on Ontario swine herds and targeted diagnostic testing of two suspect herds. Can Vet J 52:1342-1344, 2011

O’Sullivan T, Friendship R, Dewey C, Blackwell T, Pearl D, Carman S, McEwen B, Slavic D. Microbiological identification and analysis of swine tonsils collected from carcasses at slaughter. Can J Vet Res 75:106-111, 2011

Amezcua, M.R., Pearl D.L., Martinez A., Friendship R.M. Patterns of condemnation rates in swine from a federally inspected packing plant in relation to disease outbreak information in Ontario (2005-2007). Can Vet J. 52:35–42, 2011

Amezcua MR, Pearl DL, Friendship RM, McNab WB. Evaluation of a veterinary-based syndromic surveillance system implemented for swine. Can J Vet Res. 74: 241-251, 2010

Poljak Z., C. E. Dewey, T. Rosendal, R. M. Friendship, B. Young, O. Berke. Spread of porcine circovirus associated disease (PCVAD) in Ontario (Canada) swine herds: Part I. Exploratory spatial analyses. BMC Veterinary Research 6:59, 2010

Poljak Z., C. Dewey, T. Rosendal, R. M. Friendship, B. Young, O. Berke. Spread of porcine circovirus associated diseases (PCVAD) in Ontario (Canada) swine herds: Part II. Matched case-control study. BMC Veterinary Research, 6:58, 2010

Welfare

Tenbergen R, Friendship R, Cassar G, Amezcua MR, Haley D. Investigation of the use of meloxicam post farrowing for improving sow performance and reducing pain. J Swine Health Prod. 2014, 22:10-15.

Tenbergen R, Friendship R, Cassar G, Haley D. Investigation of the use of meloxicam for reducing pain associated with castration and tail-docking and improving performance in piglets. J Swine Health Prod. 2014, 22:64-70.

Amezcua MR, Walsh S, Luimes PH, Friendship RM. Infrared thermography to evaluate lameness in pregnant sows Can Vet J. 2014, 55: 268-272.

Cassar G, Amezcua R, Tenbergen R, Friendship RM. Preoperative ketoprofen administration to piglets undergoing castration does not affect subsequent growth performance. Can Vet J. 2014: 55: 1250-1252.

Nguyen K, Cassar G, Friendship R, Dewey C, Farzan A, Kirkwood RN. Stillbirth and preweaning mortality in litters of sows induced to farrow with supervision compared to litters of naturally farrowing sows with minimal supervision. J Swine Health Prod. 19(4): 214–217. 2011

Tucker, A.L., T.M. Widowski, R.M. Friendship. Associations between dental and oral conditions at weaning and future growth. J. Swine Health Prod. 18:68-74, 2010

Tucker, A.L., I.J.H. Duncan, S.T. Millman, R.M. Friendship and T. M. Widowski. The effect of dentition on feeding development in piglets and on their growth and behavior after weaning. J Anim Sci. 88:2277–2288, 2010

Public Health

 Slifierz M, Friendship RM, Weese JS. Zinc oxide therapy increases prevalence and persistence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in pigs: a randomized-controlled trial. Zoonoses and Public Health 2015, 62:301-308.

Slifierz M, Friendship R, Weese JS. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in commercial swine herds is associated with disinfectant and zinc usage. Applied and Environmental Microbiology 2015 81:8 2690-2695.

Slifierz MJ, Friendship RM, Weese JS. Longitudinal study of the early-life fecal and nasal microbiotas of the domestic pig. BMC Microbiology 2015, 15:184 doi:10.1186/s12866-015-0512-7http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2180/15/184

Grgić H, Costa M, Friendship R, Carman S, Nagy E, Wideman G, Weese S, Poljak Z. Genetic characterization of H1N1 and H1N2 influenza A viruses circulating in Ontario pigs in 2012. Plos one 2015 (in press).

Grgić H, Costa M, Friendship R, Carman S, Nagy E, Wideman G, Weese S, Poljak Z. Molecular characterization of H3N2 viruses from Ontario swine in 2011 and 2012. Virol J. 2014 22;11(1):194.

Weese JS, Slifierz M, Jalali M, Friendship R. Evaluation of the nasal microbiota in slaughter-age pigs and the impact on methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) carriage. BMC Veterinary Research 2014, 10:69 http://www.biomedcentral.com/1746-6148/10/69

Slifierz M, Park J, Friendship RM, Weese S. Zinc-resistance gene czrC identified in methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus hyicus isolated from pigs with exudative epidermitis. Can Vet J. 2014, 55: 489-490.

Park J, Friendship RM, Weese JS, Poljak Z, Dewey CE. An investigation of resistance to beta-lactam antimicrobials among staphylococci isolated from pigs with exudative epidermitis. BMC Veterinary Research 2013, 9:211.

Glass-Kaastra S, Pearl DL, Reid-Smith R McEwen B, McEwen SA, Amezcua MR, Friendship RM. Describing antimicrobial use and reported treatment efficacy in Ontario swine using the Ontario Swine Veterinary-based Surveillance program. BMC Veterinary Research 2013, 9:238.

Hawken P, Weese S, Friendship R, Warriner K. Carriage and dissemination of Clostridium difficile and methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus in pork processing. Food Control. 2013, 31: 433-437.

Hawken P, Warriner K, Friendship R, Weese S. Longitudinal study of Clostridium difficile and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus associated with pigs from weaning through to the end of processing. J Food Protection. 2013. 76: 624-630. Park J., Friendship R, Poljak Z, Weese JS, Dewey C. An investigation of exudative epidermitis (greasy pig disease) and antimicrobial resistance patterns of Staphylococcus hyicus and Staphylococcus aureus isolated from clinical cases. Can Vet J. 2013, 54:139-144.

Farzan A, Parrington L, Coklin T, Cook A, Pintar K, Pollari F, Friendship R, Farber J, Dixon B. Detection and characterization of Giardia duodenalis and Cryptosporidium spp. on swine farms in Ontario, Canada. Foodborne Pathog Dis. 2011, 8: 1207-1213.

Farzan A., R. M. Friendship, C. E. Dewey, C. Poppe, J. Funk. Evaluation of the risk factors for shedding Salmonella with or without antimicrobial resistance in swine using multinomial regression method. Zoonoses Public Health J. 2010, 57 Suppl 1:85-93.

Farzan A, R. M. Friendship, A. Cook, F. Pollari. Occurrence of Salmonella, Campylobacter, Yersinia enterocolitica, Escherichia coli O157 and Listeria monocytogenes in swine. Zoonoses Public Health J. 57:388-396, 2010

Search PubMed for additional publications by Dr. Friendship.