Send to

Choose Destination
Immunogenetics. 2009 Feb;61(2):101-10. doi: 10.1007/s00251-008-0346-7. Epub 2008 Dec 12.

Comparative in vivo infection models yield insights on early host immune response to Campylobacter in chickens.

Author information

Comparative Immunology Group, School of Biochemistry and Immunology, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland.


Salmonella typhimurium and Campylobacter jejuni pose significant risks to human health and poultry are a major vector for infection. Comparative in vivo infection models were performed to compare the avian host immune response to both bacterial species. Forty-five commercial broiler chickens were orally challenged with either C. jejuni or S. typhimurium whilst 60 similar control birds were mock challenged in parallel. Birds were sacrificed at 0, 6, 20 and 48 h post-infection and cloacal swabs, blood and tissue samples taken. Peripheral blood leukocytes were isolated for flow cytometric analyses and RNA was extracted for gene expression profiling. Colonisation patterns were markedly different between the two bacterial species, with systemic colonisation of Campylobacter outside the gastrointestinal tract. Salmonella infection induced significant changes in circulating heterophil and monocyte/macrophage populations, whilst Campylobacter infection had no effect on the heterophil numbers but caused a significant early increase in circulating monocytes/macrophages. Toll-like receptor 1 (TLR1) gene expression was decreased, and avian beta-defensin (AvBD) gene expression (AvBD3, AvBD10 and AvBD12) was significantly increased in response to Salmonella infection (P < 0.05). In contrast, Campylobacter infection induced increased TLR21 gene expression but significantly reduced expression of seven antimicrobial peptide (AMP) genes (AvBD3, AvBD4, AvBD8, AvBD13, AvBD14, CTHL2 and CTHL3; P < 0.05). Considered together, microbiological, cellular and gene expression profiles indicate that the innate immune system responds differently to Salmonella and to Campylobacter infection. Furthermore, reduction in the expression of AMPs may play a role in the persistence of high level colonisation of the host by Campylobacter.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center