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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: INTERVENTIONS TO REDUCE EPIZOOTIC PATHOGENIC BACTERIA IN SWINE AND CATTLE

Location: Food and Feed Safety Research

Title: Probiotics, prebiotics, and competitive exclusion for prophylaxis against bacterial disease

Authors
item Callaway, Todd
item Edrington, Thomas
item Anderson, Robin
item Harvey, Roger
item Genovese, Kenneth
item Kennedy, Cammie - KENNEDY ASSOC CONSULTING
item Venn, Don - GA STATE UNIVERSITY
item Nisbet, David

Submitted to: Animal Health Research Reviews
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: October 3, 2008
Publication Date: December 22, 2008
Citation: Callaway, T.R., Edrington, T.S., Anderson, R.C., Harvey, R.B., Genovese, K.J., Kennedy, C., Venn, D.W., Nisbet, D.J. 2008. Probiotics, prebiotics, and competitive exclusion for prophylaxis against bacterial disease. Animal Health Research Reviews. 9:217-225.

Interpretive Summary: Bacteria that are pathogenic to animals and human consumers can exist in the gastrointestinal tract of our food animal species. The microbial population of the intestinal tract is a complex natural resource that can be utilized in an effort to reduce pathogenic bacteria that affect animal production and efficiency, as well as the safety of food products. Probiotic approaches to reduce animal and human illnesses rely on the competitive nature of the gastrointestinal ecosystem to eliminate pathogens from food animals on the farm. The efficacy of these products is often due to specific microbial ecological factors that alter the competitive pressures experienced by the microbial population of the gut. In this review, we explore the ecology behind the efficacy of these products against pathogens found in food animals, including those that enter the food chain and impact human consumers.

Technical Abstract: Bacteria that are pathogenic to animals and human consumers can exist in the gastrointestinal tract of our food animal species. The gastrointestinal tract of food animals can be inhabited by bacteria that cause foodborne illnesses in humans, but that do not cause detectable animal illnesses or a decrease in production efficiency. The microbial population of the intestinal tract is a complex natural resource that can be utilized in an effort to reduce pathogenic bacteria that affect animal production and efficiency, as well as the safety of food products. Strategies have been devised to reduce the populations of foodborne pathogenic bacteria in animals at the on-farm stage. Many of these techniques rely on harnessing the natural competitive nature of bacteria to eliminate pathogens that negatively impact animal production or food safety. Thus, feed products that are classified as probiotics, prebiotics, and competitive exclusion cultures have been utilized as pathogen reduction strategies in food animals with varying degrees of success. The efficacy of these products is often due to specific microbial ecological factors that alter the competitive pressures experienced by the microbial population of the gut. In this review, we will explore the ecology behind the efficacy of these products against pathogens found in food animals, including those that enter the food chain and impact human consumers.

Last Modified: 4/16/2014
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