Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Feeding microbials to chickens leads to mysterious immune response

Date:
September 12, 2012
Source:
American Society of Animal Science
Summary:
A recent article helps researchers further understand how microbials and probiotics affect poultry health. These findings could have long standing implications as producers feel the pressure to move away from the sub-therapeutic use of antibiotics.

A paper recently published in the Journal of Animal Science helps researchers further understand how microbials and probiotics affect poultry health.

Related Articles


Researchers at the North Carolina State University and Chung Jen College of Nursing, Health Sciences and Management (Taiwan) conducted a study to investigate the effects of direct fed microbials on energy metabolism in different tissues of broiler chickens. The researchers wanted to learn how consuming microbials and probiotics could change energy use and immune function. Typically, direct fed microbials and probiotics are used to improve livestock health, but how they actually work is not fully understood.

These findings could have long standing implications as producers feel the pressure to move away from the sub-therapeutic use of antibiotics.

"Microbials are not a direct replacement [for sub-therapeutic antibiotics] but an opportunity through a different mechanism," said Matthew Koci, coauthor of the study and assistant professor in the department of poultry science at North Carolina State University.

In the study, 192 one-day-old broiler chicks were assigned to two different diets. One of the diets was a standard control starter diet (CSD) and the other was a CSD with direct fed microbials (DFMD). The researchers then injected twelve broilers from each diet group with sheep red blood cells at days seven, 14 and 21. The presence of sheep red blood cells challenged the chicks' immune systems without actually causing illness.

"We wanted to give the immune system something to respond to and didn't want to change the metabolism with a disease," said Koci.

Researchers measured several parameters, including body weight, whole-body energy expenditure, tissue respiration rates, and energy metabolism.

Over a 28-day period, the researchers found no difference in body weight or feed efficiency between broilers fed CSD or DFMD. In fact, there was no difference between the two treatments in any of the response criteria.

But Koci believes there may have been something going on behind the scenes. He theorizes that the interaction between direct fed microbial species and intestinal cells results in a change in the energy consumption in the small intestine. This leads to an increase in the amount of energy available to the immune system. The results of the present experiment are the first to indicate that direct fed microbials leads to increased energy expenditures by the immune system.

Through some unknown mechanism, broilers fed the microbial diet may have a faster, not better, response in their immune system. The DFMD was not promoting growth, but under disease stress, the bird would be able to get back to optimal growth in fewer days than birds not fed microbials.

Koci cautioned that individual producers may see different results from microbial use in the diet depending on the production system. He also said that not all body tissues were studied, so there could be energy directed toward other tissues that were not accounted for.

In the future, the researchers are looking to study which mechanism or microbial is directly responsible for immune responses.

"We hope to look at the physiological effects and trace them back to the signaling pathway," said Koci.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society of Animal Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. R. Qiu, J. Croom, R. A. Ali, A. L. Ballou, C. D. Smith, C. M. Ashwell, H. M. Hassan, C.- C. Chiang, M. D. Koci. Direct fed microbial supplementation repartitions host energy to the immune system. Journal of Animal Science, 2012; 90 (8): 2639 DOI: 10.2527/jas.2011-4611

Cite This Page:

American Society of Animal Science. "Feeding microbials to chickens leads to mysterious immune response." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120912161608.htm>.
American Society of Animal Science. (2012, September 12). Feeding microbials to chickens leads to mysterious immune response. ScienceDaily. Retrieved January 26, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120912161608.htm
American Society of Animal Science. "Feeding microbials to chickens leads to mysterious immune response." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120912161608.htm (accessed January 26, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Plants & Animals News

Monday, January 26, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How To: Mixed Green Salad Topped With Camembert Cheese

How To: Mixed Green Salad Topped With Camembert Cheese

Rumble (Jan. 26, 2015) Learn how to make a mixed green salad topped with a pan-seared camembert cheese in only a minute! Music: Courtesy of Audio Network. Video provided by Rumble
Powered by NewsLook.com
Water Fleas Prepare for Space Voyage

Water Fleas Prepare for Space Voyage

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Jan. 26, 2015) Scientists are preparing a group of water fleas for a unique voyage into space. The aquatic crustaceans, known as Daphnia, can be used as a miniature model for biomedical research, and their reproductive and swimming behaviour will be tested for signs of stress while on board the International Space Station. Jim Drury went to meet the team. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Husky Puppy Plays With Ferret

Husky Puppy Plays With Ferret

Rumble (Jan. 26, 2015) It looks like this 2-month-old Husky puppy and the family ferret are going to be the best of friends. Look at how much fun they&apos;re having together! Credit to &apos;Vira&apos;. Video provided by Rumble
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Model Flying, Walking Drone After Vampire Bats

Scientists Model Flying, Walking Drone After Vampire Bats

Buzz60 (Jan. 26, 2015) Swiss scientists build a new drone that can both fly and walk, modeling it after the movements of common vampire bats. Jen Markham (@jenmarkham) has the story. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins