While some research has looked into the host genetic response in pigs challenged with specific viruses or bacteria, few studies have explored the expression changes of transcripts in the peripheral blood of sick pigs that may be infected with multiple pathogens on farms. In this study, the architecture of the peripheral blood transcriptome of 64 Duroc sired commercial pigs, including 18 healthy animals at entry to a growing facility (set as a control) and 23 pairs of samples from healthy and sick pen mates, was generated using RNA-Seq technology. In total, 246 differentially expressed genes were identified to be specific to the sick animals. Functional enrichment analysis for those genes revealed that the over-represented gene ontology terms for the biological processes category were exclusively immune activity related. The cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction pathway was significantly enriched. Nine functional genes from this pathway encoding members (as well as their receptors) of the interleukins, chemokines, tumor necrosis factors, colony stimulating factors, activins, and interferons exhibited significant transcriptional alteration in sick animals. Our results suggest a subset of novel marker genes that may be useful candidate genes in the evaluation and prediction of health status in pigs under commercial production conditions.