Submitted to: Proceedings of the Maryland Nutrition Conference
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: June 12, 1999
Publication Date: N/A
Interpretive Summary: Parasites which infect the intestine cause significant economic losses to the poultry industry since the infection can cause malabsorption of the nutrients and also poor feed utilization. ARS scientists have been studying coccidiosis,a disease caused by the protozoan parasite called coccidia, to develop a new control strategy against this parasite. Coccidiosis costs the industry more than $600 million annually in prophylactic treatment. Drugs have been used to prevent coccidiosis. However, with the increasing concerns over the development of drug-resistant coccidia parasites in the field, a new control strategy is critically needed. In this presentation, recent developments and novel concepts for controlling coccidiosis, based upon immunity, dietary manipulation and genetics will be discussed. The authors review the current understanding of how various nutrients improve the host disease resistance against coccidiosis. They also summarize the new knowledge on the host response to coccidia. The information which is presented in this paper will enhance the feasibility of developing a new control strategy for intestinal parasitism. It will help reduce the major stress factor that can lead to a lowered performance and a lowered production efficiency in livestock and poultry.