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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Lee, Sung Hyen
item Lillehoj, Hyun
item Chun, Hyekyung
item Park, Hongju
item Cho, Soomuk
item Park, Dungwoon
item Heckert, Robert

Submitted to: BARC Poster Day
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/10/2006
Publication Date: 4/26/2006
Citation: Lee, S., Lillehoj, H.S., Chun, H., Park, H., Cho, S., Park, D., Heckert, R.A. 2006. Immunomodulatory effects of traditional medicinal koren plants in spafas chickens. Proceedings of BARC poster Day. April 26.Beltsville, Md.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Avian coccidiosis is the most economically important parasitic disease of the poultry industry. Drugs and live vaccines are the two main control measures for coccidiosis; however, due to increasing concerns on drug resistance and high cost of live parasite vaccines, alternative control methods are needed. Recent evidence that various dietary supplements influence host immunity against enteric diseases prompted us to investigate the role of traditional Korean medicinal plants on various aspects of host immune responses. Dandelion root, mustard leaf, safflower leaf, plum fruit, and citrus fruit have been used extensively as traditional medicinal foods to enhance natural immunity and treat cancers. However, underlying mechanisms for the enhanced immunity have not been well studied. In this study, the effects of methanol extracts of various Korean indigenous plants were tested on in vitro lymphocyte proliferation, tumor cell viability, and nitric oxide production assays. Safflower leaf stimulated peripheral blood lymphocyte proliferation, whereas the citrus fruit stimulated splenocyte proliferation in a dose-dependent manner. Moreover, all five extracts inhibited the viability of a tumor cell line whereas, dandelion root, safflower leaf and plum fruit extracts stimulated nitric oxide production by macrophages. The immune enhancing effect of safflower leaf and plum was tested by feeding SPAFAS chickens with safflower or plum and then examining body weight gains, fecal oocyst shedding, splenocyte proliferation and antibody response following challenge infection with Eimeria acervulina (EA). Safflower leaf and plum reduced oocyst shedding in the birds infected with EA with no significant effect on weight gains. Chickens fed safflower leaf and plum showed enhanced spleen proliferation compared with that of birds fed the control diet. The percentage of CD8+ cells was reduced in the safflower- and plum-fed groups whereas the percentages of CD4+/CD8+ and IgM+ cells increased in safflower- or plum-treated groups. These results indicate that these traditionally used medicinal plants possess immune enhancing properties and increase protective immunity against coccidiosis. This work has been partially supported by the Trust agreement between RDA and ARS (58-1265-4-F060).

Last Modified: 06/26/2017
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