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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Little Rock, Arkansas » Arkansas Children's Nutrition Center » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #208446

Title: Sow-reared neonatal pigs exhibit increased innate immune response than formula-fed pigs

Author
item THAMPI, PRAJITHA
item BURRIS, RAMONA
item HELM, RICK
item NAGARAJAN, SHANMUGAM

Submitted to: Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Conference
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/15/2007
Publication Date: 4/28/2007
Citation: Thampi, P., Burris, R.L., Helm, R.M., Nagarajan, S. 2007. Sow-reared neonatal pigs exhibit increased innate immune response than formula-fed pigs [abstract]. The FASEB Journal. 21(5):A376.

Interpretive Summary: It has long been thought that breast milk helps develop stronger resistance against infections in infants than formula feeding, but the reasons for these differences are not well understood. Because immune system function is so important and since antibiotics are becoming less effective, it is essential to learn more about the development and function of this system. The increased resistance to infection in breast-fed infants could be due to an enhancement of innate immune response which is the first line of defense against pathogens. In this study, we examined the effects of milk-based formula feeding on the development and function of the innate immune system in a neonatal pig model. Our findings suggest that the neonatal innate immune system in sow-reared pigs is functionally better adapted than formula-fed piglets. This pig model now provides an excellent opportunity to study the effects of various dietary factors on the development and function of the various aspects of the immune system. Our future goals would be learn how to improve immune function by improvements in diet.

Technical Abstract: Breast milk with its varied immune modulating components helps develop stronger resistance against infections in infants than formula feeding. The increased resistance to infection in breast-fed infants could be due to augmentation of innate immune response, a first line of defense against pathogens. In this study we studied the effect of formula feeding on the development and function of the innate immune system in a neonatal pig model. Piglets were sow-reared or weaned at postnatal day 2 to a milk- or soy-based infant formula. At postnatal day 21, innate immune response such as reactive oxygen species generation (ROS), chemokine-mediated chemotaxis of neutrophils and monocytes were studied. Neutrophils and monocytes from sow-reared piglets generated higher levels of ROS compared to milk- or soy-formula fed piglets. Migration of neutrophils using fMLP as a chemoattractant, showed no difference in chemotactic index between sow-reared and formula-fed pigs. Flow cytometric analyses showed the number of monocytes in peripheral blood were not different among the three groups. However, a monocyte chemokine, MCP-1 mediated monocyte chemotaxis was higher (p<0.05) in soy-fed piglets compared to sow-reared or milk-formula fed piglets. Collectively, these findings suggest that the neonatal innate immune system in sow-reared pigs is functionally better adapted than formula-fed piglets.