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Cell preparation of Enterococcus faecalis strain EC-12 prevents vancomycin-resistant enterococci colonization in the cecum of newly hatched chicks

Sakai, Y., Tsukahara, T., Bukawa, W., Matsubara, N., Ushida, K.
Poultry science 2006 v.85 no.2 pp. 273-277
broiler chickens, cell walls, immunization, bacterial colonization, immunoglobulin A, immunoglobulin G
The use of antimicrobials in broilers is considered to be a cause of the appearance of vancomycin-resistant enterococci (VRE). Once VRE penetration occurs, whatever its origin, it is difficult to expel the enterococci from the intestine because of their multiple resistance, whether natural or acquired. In this study, we evaluated the prevention of VRE colonization by the dietary supplementation of a cell-wall preparation of Enterococcus faecalis strain EC-12 (EC-12) in newly hatched broilers that were challenged by experimental infection with VRE. The chicks were fed a basal diet supplemented with 0.05% (wt/wt) EC-12 powder for 15 d. The control group and that administered Lactobacillus sp. were fed the basal diet. The VRE challenge was administered orally when the chicks were 2 d old (d 0). Dietary EC-12 reduced VRE colonization in the intestine from d 3 to 14. Total IgA in the cecal digesta and total IgG in the serum were higher on d 14 in the EC-12 treatment group. However, VRE-specific and EC-12-specific antibodies were not affected in serum. Hence, it appeared that dietary EC-12 stimulated the gut immune system and reinforced the immune reaction against the VRE challenge to accelerate its defecation from the chick intestine.