Procedures—Chickens received conventional vaccinations throughout the study and were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 treatments in 6 replicate pens/treatment. Treatments included 1 control group (basal diet) and 3 experimental groups fed the basal diet plus 200, 400, and 800 mg of RES/kg of diet. At 40 days of age, 1 bird/pen was randomly selected to have blood and tissues collected to determine serum immunity indices; mRNA relative expression of proinflammatory cytokines in splenocytes; mRNA relative expression of nuclear transcription factor-κB, growth hormone receptor, and insulin-like growth factor-1 in hepatocytes; cell proliferation; and apoptosis.
Results—Average daily gain, antibody titers against Newcastle disease virus and avian influenza viruses H5 and H9, and insulin-like growth factor-1 expression were quadratically increased with increasing RES concentration. In hepatocytes, growth hormone receptor gene mRNA relative expression was quadratically increased and nuclear transcription factor-κB gene mRNA relative expression was linearly decreased with increasing RES concentration. In splenocytes, nterleukin-1β and tumor necrosis factor-α mRNA relative expression was linearly decreased with increasing RES concentration. Resveratrol supplementation delayed cell proliferation and reduced apoptosis in immunocytes. With increasing RES concentration, proliferation index and relative weight of the thymus, ratio of CD4+ to CD8+ cells, and CD4+ cell count were quadratically increased, and IgM concentration was linearly increased.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Dietary resveratrol supplementation improved growth, protected immunocytes against antigen-induced apoptosis, and upregulated immune response in chickens that received conventional vaccinations.