Submitted to: Journal of Animal Science Supplement
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/20/2015
Publication Date: 3/14/2016
Citation: Carroll, J.A., Sanchez, N.C., Broadway, P.R. 2016. Exploring connections between metabolic profiles, stress responses and immune function.. Journal of Animal Science Supplement. 94(Supplement 2):41.
Technical Abstract: Future livestock production will have to contend with increased regulatory issues and consumer-driven production practices that will challenge current management practices for all livestock producers. Implementing new health management and nutritional protocols will require a more in-depth understanding of the biological system, especially related to how nutrition influences the immune system and overall health of the animal. Nutritional immunology will most likely become a central theme as livestock producers explore opportunities to improve animal health and performance in production facilities. This will require a greater multidisciplinary scientific approach to understanding how the metabolic status of an animal may influence aspects of the immune system from cellular signaling to antibody generation. There will need to be an increased effort associated with understanding the nutrient requirements associated with maintaining a healthy immune system, as well as understanding the nutrient requirements of an animal undergoing or recovering from an immunological challenge. There will need to be more focus on understanding the differential programming of animals as it pertains to nutrient partitioning and energy utilization, and why some animals are more resilient to immunological insults while some animals are more susceptible. Exploring and understanding prenatal and perinatal strategies for pre-programming the immune system to improve postnatal health will allow for new opportunities for improving overall animal production. Understanding how energy availability, whether endogenous (e.g., genetic selection of animals) or exogenous sources (e.g., dietary supplementation), can be an effective mediator of immune function not only reduce the severity of animal diseases, but also how it can be utilized to enhance recovery and restore homeostasis. While there will undoubtedly be multiple challenges ahead for livestock producers, there will also be exciting opportunities. Development of “designer diets” that contain various pre- and/or pro-biotic compounds that are specific for not only different management systems and different stages of production, but also for targeting specific pathogens, will undoubtedly reveal novel nutritional strategies for improving future livestock production.