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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Beltsville, Maryland (BARC) » Beltsville Agricultural Research Center » Animal Biosciences & Biotechnology Laboratory » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #393130

Research Project: Novel Integrated Nutrition and Health Strategies to Improve Production Efficiencies in Poultry

Location: Animal Biosciences & Biotechnology Laboratory

Title: Effects of delay of feed post-hatch on the expression of immune related genes and their correlation with components of the gut microbiota

Author
item Miska, Kate
item KAHL, STANISLAW - Retired ARS Employee
item Schreier, Lori
item RUSSELL, BEVERLY - Retired ARS Employee
item Kpodo, Kouassi
item Proszkowiec-Weglarz, Monika

Submitted to: Animals
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/19/2022
Publication Date: 5/21/2022
Citation: Miska, K.B., Kahl, S., Schreier, L.L., Russell, B., Kpodo, K.R., Proszkowiec-Wegla, M.K. 2022. Effects of delay of feed post-hatch on the expression of immune related genes and their correlation with components of the gut microbiota. Animals. 12(10). https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12101316.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12101316

Interpretive Summary: Newly hatched chicks do not have access to feed until 48-72 h post-hatch based on standard practices in the poultry industry. How these practices affect chicken’s immune system in not well understood. In this study, we investigated the effect of delay in access to feed for 48 h in newly hatched chicks on the expression of various immune related genes in the ileum and analyzed the correlation between these genes and the components of the ileal microbiota. The results suggest that several immune related genes were affected by delayed access to feed and age of the birds; however, these changes were transient occurring mostly within 48 h of the return of birds to feed. In the correlation analysis between gene expression and components of the ileal microbiota, increased number of significant correlations between immune related genes and the genera Clostridium, Enterococcus, and the species Clostridium perfringens suggests a perturbation of the immune response and ileal microbiota in response to lack of feed immediately post-hatch. These results point out the complexity of the interplay between microbiota and the immune response and will help better understand the negative effects of delay in access to feed on production parameters in chickens.

Technical Abstract: Newly hatched chicks do not have access to feed until 48-72 h post-hatch based on standard practices in the poultry industry. How these practices affect the chicken’s immune system is not well understood. In this study, we investigated the effect of a 48-h delay in access to feed on the expression of specific immune-related genes in the gut (ileum) of newly hatched chicks. We also analyzed the correlation between these genes and the microbiota components of the ileum. The results suggest that several immune-related genes were affected by delayed access to feed and age of the birds; although, these changes were transient and occurred mostly within 48 h of the return of feed to the birds. In the correlation analysis, however, the increased number of significant correlations between immune-related genes and the microbiota genera Clostridium and Enterococcus, as well as the species Clostridium perfringens, suggests a perturbation of the immune response and ileal microbiota related to lack of feed immediately post-hatch. These results point out the complexity of the interplay between microbiota and the immune response and will help better define the negative effects of delay in access to feed on production parameters in chickens.