Skip to main content
ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Animal Biosciences & Biotechnology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #303823

Title: Immune modulation by Baccillus subtilis-based direct-fed microbials in commercial broiler chickens

item Lillehoj, Hyun
item LEE, KYUNG WOO - US Department Of Agriculture (USDA)
item Kim, Duk Kyung

Submitted to: Avian Immunology Research Group Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/28/2014
Publication Date: 6/16/2014
Citation: Lillehoj, H.S., Lee, K., Kim, D. 2014. Immune modulation by Baccillus subtilis-based direct-fed microbials in commercial broiler chickens. Avian Immunology Research Group Abstract. p64.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Direct-fed microbials (DFMs), also known as probiotics have been successfully used to improve the balance of gut microflora. Spores of Bacillus subtilis (B. subtilis), have been used as DFMs for food animals and humans, and our previous studies showed that dietary supplementation of newly hatched broiler chickens with B. subtilis DFM improved protection against avian coccidiosis. In this presentation, new information on the effects of dietary B. subtilis DFM on the host’s immune response to Eimeria spp. and C. perfringens using global gene expression analysis is reported. Day-old broiler chickens were fed diets with or without DFMs for 28 days starting from hatch. At days 14 and 28, broiler chickens fed the B. subtilis DFM-enriched diet grew faster (P < 0.05) compared with the control diet-fed chickens. Broiler chickens fed the diet containing B. subtilis DFM exhibited a significant decrease (P = 0.033) in Eimeria- and C. perfringens Necrotic enteritis B like toxin-specific serum antibodies compared with those fed a control diet at day 28. The levels of transcripts encoding interleukin (IL)1ß, IL12 and interferon gamma were greater (P = 0.004) in the B. subtilis-fed chickens compared with the control chickens. Dietary DFMs induced considerable changes in transcript expression in the intestine, and biofunctional analysis identified 23 biological functions belonging to the category of “Disease and Disorder” that were significantly associated (P < 0.05) with the genes modified by B. subtilis treatment. These results indicate that dietary B. subtilis DFMs is one way to reduce the use of in-feed antibiotics to increase growth and augment pro-inflammatory cytokine responses in broiler chickens.