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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: Induction of Passive Immunity in Broiler Chickens Against Eimeria acervulina by Hyperimmune Egg Yolk IgY

item Lillehoj, Hyun
item Lee, Sung
item Park, Dong Woon
item Jang, Seung Ik
item Lillehoj, Erik
item Morales, Andres
item Garcia, Donaji
item Lucio, Eduardo
item Larios, Ruth
item Victoria, Gustavo
item Marrufo, Daniel

Submitted to: Poultry Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/15/2010
Publication Date: 6/15/2010
Citation: Lillehoj, H.S., Lee, S.H., Park, D., Jang, S., Lillehoj, E., Morales, A., Garcia, D., Lucio, E., Larios, R., Victoria, G., Marrufo, D. 2010. Induction of Passive Immunity in Broiler Chickens Against Eimeria acervulina by Hyperimmune Egg Yolk IgY. Poultry Science. 88(3):562-566.

Interpretive Summary: Avian coccidiosis is an intestinal disease caused by several distinct species of Eimeria protozoa and is the most economically significant parasitic infection of the poultry industry worldwide. Although prophylactic use of anti-coccidia feed additives has been the primary method of controlling avian coccidiosis, alternative control methods are needed due to increasing concerns with prophylactic drug use and high cost of vaccines. As an alternative control strategy potentially applicable to intestinal diseases such as avian coccidiosis, we developed a passive immunization strategy using hyperimmune, parasite-specific antibodies. As opposed to pathogen-specific immunity achieved by active vaccination with live or inactivated microorganisms, or subunits derived from pathogens, passive immunization relies on the transfer of humoral immunity in the form of active antibodies from one individual to another. In collaboration with scientists from the Investigación Aplicada, S. A. de C. V. (IASA), Puebla, Mexico, we demonstate that chicken egg yolk IgY antibodies offered a practicable alternative to mammalian serum antibodies because of their feasibility for large-scale commercial production and the relative non-invasive methods used for their preparation. The results of current studies showed that oral feeding of young chickens with hyperimmune IgY antibodies protected against oral challenge infection with live coccidia parasites. These results provide novel antibiotic-free method to control coccidiosis. The concept of passive immunity for coccidiosis control using hyperimmune IgY antibodies is being translated into a commercial product by . IASA company.

Technical Abstract: The protective effect of hyperimmune IgY fraction of egg yolk (SC) prepared from hens hyperimmunized with multiple species of Eimeria oocysts, on experimental coccidiosis was evaluated in young broilers. Chickens were continuously fed from hatch with a standard diet containing SC or a non-supplemented control diet, orally challenged at day 7 post-hatch with 5.0 × 103 live E. acervulina oocysts. Body weight gain between days 0 and 10 and fecal oocyst shedding between days 5 and 10 post-infection were determined as parameters of protective immunity. Chickens given 10% or 20% SC showed significantly increased body weight gain and reduced fecal oocyst shedding compared with control birds fed the non-supplemented diet. To test the effect of SC under lower supplementary dose with higher coccidia challenge dose, chickens were fed diets containing 0.01%, 0.02%, and 0.05% SC and challenged with orally 1.0 × 104 oocystsof E. acervulina. Total oocyst shedding was significantly (P < 0.05) reduced in chickens fed the 0.02% and 0.05% SC diets compared with animals fed the non-supplemented diet. Similarly, chickens fed 0.5% of SC diet and challenged with 1.0 × 104 oocysts exhibited reduced oocyst shedding compared with the control birds given 0.5% of IgY from non-immunized hen eggs, although body weight gain was not affected. We conclude that passive immunization of chickens with anti-coccidia IgY antibodies may provide protective immunity against coccidiosis challenge infection by reducing fecal oocysts shedding.

Last Modified: 06/22/2017
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