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Vaccine. 2011 Apr 27;29(19):3571-82. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2011.03.075. Epub 2011 Apr 5.

Protective immunity conferred by a DNA adenine methylase deficient Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium vaccine when delivered in-water to sheep challenged with Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium.

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University of Sydney, Faculty of Veterinary Science, Camden, NSW 2570, Australia.


Stimulation of acquired immunity to Salmonella in livestock is not feasible in neonates (which can be infected within 24h of birth) and is challenging in feedlots, which typically source animals from diverse locations and vendors. Induction of innate immune mechanisms through mass vaccination of animals upon arrival to feedlots is an alternative approach. Transport, environmental conditions, changes in social grouping, and further handling during feedlot assembly are significant stressors. These factors, as well as concurrent exposure to a diversity of pathogens, contribute to the risk of disease. We have shown that oral immunization of calves with a modified live Salmonella enterica serovar Typhimurium vaccine strain, which lacks the DNA adenine methylase gene (S. Typhimurium dam), attenuates the severity of clinical disease, reduces fecal shedding, and promotes clearance of salmonellae following virulent homologous and heterologous challenge. This study examines the safety and efficacy of a S. Typhimurium dam vaccine in sheep via oral delivery in drinking water (ad libitum), as a means to effectively vaccinate large groups of animals. Adult merino sheep were vaccinated in drinking water -28 days, -7 days and 24h pre and 24h post-virulent Salmonella Typhimurium challenge which was administered via the oral route. Significant attenuation of clinical disease (temperature, appetite, and attitude) and reduction in mortality and virulent Salmonella Typhimurium fecal shedding and tissue colonization was observed in animals that received the vaccine 28 and 7 days pre-challenge. Further, vaccination did not pose a risk to stock previously infected with virulent salmonellae as mortalities and clinical disease in sheep vaccinated prior to or following virulent challenge did not differ significantly from the non-vaccinated controls. The capacity of S. Typhimurium dam vaccines delivered in drinking water to protect livestock from virulent Salmonella challenge offers an effective, economical, stressor free Salmonella prophylaxis for intensive livestock production systems.

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