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Progression of lesions in the respiratory tract of broilers after single infection with Escherichia coli compared to superinfection with E-coli after infection with infectious bronchitis virus

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  • R. Marius Dwars
  • Mieke G. R. Matthijs
  • Angeline J. J. M. Daemen
  • Jo H. H. van Eck
  • Lonneke Vervelde
  • Wil J. M. Landman

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    Rights statement: Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V.

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http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0165242708003620
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)65-76
Number of pages12
JournalVeterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Volume127
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2009

Abstract

The progression of Escherichia coli lesions was studied in the respiratory tract of 4-week-old commercial broilers. Lesions were induced after a single intratracheal E. coli infection, and after an infection with E. coli preceded 5 days earlier by an oculo-nasal and intratracheal infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) infection of either the virulent M41 strain or the H120 vaccine strain. Trachea, lung and thoracic airsac lesions were examined macroscopically and microscopically. Tissue samples were taken at 3 h post-inoculation (hpi), and 1, 2, 4 and 7 days post-inoculation (dpi) with E. coli. The location of both pathogens was assessed by immunohistochemistry. Single E. coli inoculation induced pneumonia and airsacculitis; in case it was preceded by IBV infection, the same macroscopical lesions and also viral tracheitis were found. No clear difference existed between the single and dual infected birds with respect to inflammatory reactions in the lung, which had disappeared within 7 days, except for the presence of more follicles in dual infected birds. IBV antigen was detected in secondary bronchi and airsacs up to 2 dpi and in the trachea up too dpi. E. call bacteria were found in the tracheal lumen included in purulent material, the parabronchi and airsacs. In lung tissue E. coli antigen was found up to 4 dpi. No clear difference existed between single and dual inoculated birds regarding the presence of E. coli in the lung. In the airsacs, a few bacteria were found from 0.5 hpi up to 4 dpi in E. coli and IBV-E. coli inoculated birds. Although both pathogens were cleared beyond detection at 7 dpi, in IBV-E. coli inoculated birds lesions in the airsac persisted, in contrast to broilers inoculated with E. coli only. In the present study it is shown that 4-week-old broilers are not resistant to intratracheal E. coli inoculation, however, these birds can overcome the induced E. coli infection within a short time span. Moreover, a preceding infection with vaccine or virulent IBV does not seem to impair the clearance of E. coli in the respiratory tract of broilers, but rather induces an exaggerated inflammatory response in the airsacs only, which seems to be the mechanism behind the pattern of airsacculitis in commercial poultry in the field. (C) 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

    Research areas

  • TURKEYS, BIRDS, LUNG, Airsacculitis, SUSCEPTIBILITY, Tracheitis, VIRULENT, Infectious bronchitis virus, AVIAN PNEUMOVIRUS, PULMONARY SURFACTANT, Superinfection, ORNITHOBACTERIUM-RHINOTRACHEALE, COLIBACILLOSIS, Escherichia coli, CHICKENS, Pneumonia

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