PIC Update: Exploring Gut Immunity
Exploring Gut Immunity
Tim Nelson, Executive Director and Kimberly Sheppard, Research Co-ordinator
The use of antibiotics in poultry production has raised concerns about
the development of antimicrobial resistance in microbes.
Research investigates how antibiotics are affecting the chicken intestinal and immune systems
Results of Dr. Shayan Sharif’s studies have provided critical information about how antibiotics are affecting the chicken intestinal
and immune systems.
The use of antibiotics in poultry production has raised concerns about the development of antimicrobial resistance in microbes. Also of concern is the fact that antibiotic use often results in destabilization of the various bacteria in the gut – many of which help to develop and regulate gut function. Some bacteria are even capable of controlling food-borne pathogens such as salmonella and campylobacter. This suggests that imprudent use of antibiotics may potentially adversely affect animal health and also raises some food safety concerns.
It’s been reported that gut bacteria and changes in the microbial community could affect the chicken immune system. As the use of antibiotics in food animal production develops, having a better understanding of how antibiotics affect chicken gut microflora and the immune system could lead to the development of more effective antimicrobials.
Dr. Shayan Sharif and his research team at the University of Guelph in collaboration with Dr. Joshua Gong (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada) have been investigating interactions between antibiotics, gut microbes and the chicken immune system. They looked at the effects of virginiamycin on the various bacteria in the chicken gut.
Their findings? They discovered that virginiamycin treatment altered the variety of bacteria, including beneficial bacteria within the Lactobacillus family (Lactobacilli are commonly used as probiotics in poultry production). Dr. Sharif and his team also showed that virginiamycin possesses immune enhancing properties and that by manipulating the gut microflora we may be able to positively impact the development of immune response in other parts of the body. These results have provided critical information about how antibiotics are affecting the chicken intestinal and immune systems. To read more, please visit www.poultryindustrycouncil.ca .
Dr. Shayan Sharif graduated with a DVM degree from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tehran, Iran in 1991. The area of Dr. Sharif’s DVM thesis was genetic resistance to Marek’s disease in chickens, which sparked an interest in him to pursue a career in chicken immunology and immunogenetics. Upon graduation, Dr. Sharif worked for close to two years in the broiler industry in Iran before migrating to Canada. He pursued a PhD program in the area of immunology and immunogenetics at the Ontario Veterinary College, Guelph. Dr. Sharif was recruited in 2001 as a faculty member and also a member of the PIC-sponsored Poultry Program Team by the Department of Pathobiology, University of Guelph. He is currently supervising a team consisting of four students, three technicians and twp post-doctoral fellows. There are three active research programs in Dr. Sharif’s lab: (1) Immunology and genetics of resistance against Marek’s disease, (2) Avian influenza virus immunity, and (3) Studies of chicken gut immune system in health and disease.
|METHODS FOR RAPID, QUANTITATIVE DETECTION OF LISTERIA, SALMONELLA AND CAMPYLOBACTER CONTAMINATION |
Mansel Griffiths, University of Guelph
Identifying methods to rapidly detect and identify pathogens in the
In order to raise pathogens to detectable levels, however, an
There are currently several accepted (published) methods for the direct
To seek a solution to this conundrum Drs. Mansel Griffiths and Petra
Their findings? Using a combination of a filtration “setup” and
Poultry Worker Award
Each year at the Annual Poultry Conference in November the industry recognizes an individual who has made a significant contribution to our industry. Anyone can nominate someone for this award. The nominations are then screened and references checked by an independent panel, who then make the final assessment and decision.
So many brilliant people work in our industry and it’s always very hard to select just one. The process takes time, so it’s really important that if you feel there is an individual who is deserving of this prestigious honour that you nominate them before Sept. 16, when nominations close.
Golf Tournament Sept. 10, at Foxwood Golf and Country Club, filling fast. If you haven’t registered please do so today. Although we have increased capacity this year, we’re almost sold out.
This year 44 projects were received and of those the PIC has approved 26 for funding. The standard of applications was high. Those projects that have been granted funds are on the PIC website and details will be published in next month’s Canadian Poultry magazine. PIC is currently seeking supplementary funds to ensure that the 26 approved projects receive the maximum amount of funding possible to undertake the important work that has been proposed.
The Inaugural Poultry Innovation Conference
The first Poultry Innovation Conference will be held at Bingeman’s in Kitchener, Ont., on Nov. 10 and 11, and will offer two days of learning and networking for the whole industry. Day 1 comprises an afternoon of research reports in a similar format enjoyed by so many of you at this year’s Research Day. Day 2 will offer plenty for everyone with very practical sessions designed by producers for producers and industry service professionals. The day will culminate in a gala dinner to celebrate our industry. Spend some social time with friends and have the pleasure and privilege of hearing our guest speaker and one of our industry’s legends, Donald McQueen Shaver, O.C. D.Sc.
Dr. Shaver will share his thoughts on today’s poultry industry, agriculture at large, the challenges that lay ahead and based on his vast experience and knowledge some suggestions on how to deal with them. This is an opportunity to hear someone who has “lived” the industry and played an integral role in shaping what we see today.
The opinions of this elder statesman of poultry are important, inspirational and informative – don’t miss this. For more information, call PIC.
Nominations for PIC Board membership for 2008/09 close on Aug. 31, 2008. Individuals interested in making a difference in our industry through research and education are invited to apply.
Please contact PIC for details or Bob Guy at OBHECC who is the chairman of the PIC Nominating Committee.
This year’s Annual Meeting (all members are encouraged to attend) will be held at the Victoria East Golf club at 11-30 a.m. on Oct. 7. The meeting will be followed by lunch at the club at 12 noon provided by PIC.
Prior to the meeting we will be running a “report and review” session looking at the current research and the new proposals, and updating the Ontario Poultry Industry R&E Strategy – more details on this event will be published in next month’s Canadian Poultry magazine.
For more details on any of the items in the PIC Update please contact PIC at 519-837-0284 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org .