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  • Author or Editor: Yan Zhang x
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Objective—To determine the effects of resveratrol (RES) on growth and immune status in chickens receiving conventional vaccinations.

Animals—Two hundred forty 1-day-old layer chickens.

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.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


OBJECTIVE: To investigate the distribution of T-cell markers (CD4 and CD8α) in lymphoid organs of newborn, juvenile, and adult yaks.

ANIMALS: 15 healthy male yaks of various ages from highland plateaus.

PROCEDURES: Yaks were allocated to groups on the basis of age (newborn [1 to 7 days old; n = 5], juvenile [5 to 7 months old; 5], and adult [3 to 4 years old; 5]). The thymus, spleen, 5 mesenteric lymph nodes, and 5 hemal nodes were harvested from each yak within 10 minutes after euthanasia. Morphological characteristics of those lymphoid organs were assessed by histologic examination; expression of CD4 and CD8α mRNAs and proteins were measured by quantitative real-time PCR assay and immunohistochemical staining.

RESULTS: Among the lymphoid organs evaluated, expressions of CD4 and CD8α mRNAs were highest in the thymus in all age groups. In newborn lymphoid organs, CD4 mRNA expression and CD4+ cell distribution were more predominant, whereas in juvenile and adult lymphoid organs, CD8α mRNA expression and CD8α+ cell distribution were more predominant. The CD4+ and CD8α+ cells were mainly located in the cortex and medulla of the thymus, the medulla of the hemal nodes and mesenteric lymph nodes, the periarteriolar lymphoid sheaths, and the red pulp of the spleen.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Results indicated that the CD4 mRNA expression and CD4+ T-cell distribution in yak lymphoid organs decreased and CD8α mRNA expression and CD8α+ T-cell distribution increased with age. Moreover, CD8α+ cells were present in the follicles of yaks’ secondary lymphoid organs, which differs from findings for other mammals.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


OBJECTIVE To evaluate age-related changes in the morphology and expression of cluster of differentiation 3 (CD3), S100 β, and caspase-3 of the thymus of healthy yaks (Bos grunniens).

ANIMALS 15 healthy male yaks of various ages from highland plateaus.

PROCEDURES Yaks were allocated to 3 groups on the basis of age (newborn [1 to 7 days old; n = 5], juvenile [5 to 7 months old, 5], and adult [3 to 4 years old; 5]) and euthanized. The thymus was harvested from each yak within 10 minutes after euthanasia. Morphological characteristics were assessed by histologic examination and transmission electron microscopy. Expression of CD3, S100 β, and caspase-3 mRNA and protein was measured by quantitative real-time PCR assay, Western blot analysis, and immunohistochemical staining.

RESULTS As age increased, functional thymic tissue was replaced with adipose and connective tissues and the thymic capsule thickened. Expression of CD3 and S100 β mRNA and protein decreased with age, whereas expression of caspase-3 mRNA and protein increased with age. Immunohistochemical staining revealed that CD3-positive thymocytes were located within both the thymic cortex and medulla, S100 β–positive thymic dendritic cells were located in the corticomedullary junction and medulla, and caspase-3–positive thymocytes were diffusely scattered throughout the cortex and medulla.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that age-related thymic changes in yaks that live on highland plateaus were similar to those observed in humans and other mammals. Thus, yaks might serve as a model to study thymic immune system adaptations to high elevations.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To determine whether porcine dermatitis and nephropathy syndrome (PDNS) could be experimentally induced in gnotobiotic swine.

Sample Population—Plasma samples from 27 sows and 20 conventional weaned piglets were obtained, and 30 gnotobiotic pigs were used in experiments.

Procedures—3 experiments were conducted. Groups of 3-day-old gnotobiotic pigs were inoculated with pooled plasma samples obtained from healthy feeder pigs in a herd that was in the initial phases of an outbreak of respiratory disease; gross and histologic lesions of PDNS were detected in the inoculated pigs. In a second experiment, 2- and 3-day-old gnotobiotic pigs were inoculated with porcine reproductive respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV) and with PRRSV-negative tissue homogenate containing genogroup 1 torque teno virus (g1-TTV). Lesions of PDNS were detected.

Results—Pigs inoculated with pooled plasma or the combination of tissue-culture–origin PRRSV and g1-TTV tissue homogenate developed systemic hemostatic defects, bilaterally symmetric cutaneous hemorrhages, generalized edema, icterus, bilaterally symmetric renal cortical hemorrhage, dermal vasculitis with hemorrhage, and interstitial pneumonia consistent with a clinical and pathologic diagnosis of PDNS. The PRRSV RNAs and g1-TTV DNAs were detected in plasma; all pigs seroconverted to PRRSV, and all had negative results for porcine circovirus type 2 when tested by use of PCR assays.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—These data suggested that PDNS is a manifestation of disseminated intravascular coagulation in swine. For the experimental conditions reported here, combined infection with g1-TTV and PRRSV was implicated in the genesis of these lesions.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Case Description—In April 2012, Salmonella enterica serotype Infantis was detected in an unopened bag of dry dog food collected during routine retail surveillance. PulseNet, a national bacterial subtyping network, identified humans with Salmonella Infantis infection with the same genetic fingerprint as the dog food sample.

Clinical Findings—An outbreak investigation identified 53 ill humans infected with the outbreak strain during January 1 to July 5, 2012, in 21 states and 2 provinces in Canada; 20 (38%) were children ≤ 2 years old, and 12 of 37 (32%) were hospitalized. Of 21 ill people who remembered the dog food brand, 12 (57%) reported a brand produced at a plant in Gaston, SC. Traceback investigations also identified that plant. The outbreak strain was isolated from bags of dry dog food and fecal specimens obtained from dogs that lived with ill people and that ate the implicated dry dog food.

Treatment and Outcome—The plant was closed temporarily for cleaning and disinfection. Sixteen brands involving > 27,000 metric tons (> 30,000 tons) of dry dog and cat food were recalled. Thirty-one ill dogs linked to recalled products were reported through the FDA consumer complaint system.

Clinical Relevance—A one-health collaborative effort on epidemiological, laboratory, and traceback investigations linked dry dog foods produced at a plant to illnesses in dogs and humans. More efforts are needed to increase awareness among pet owners, health-care professionals, and the pet food industry on the risk of illness in pets and their owners associated with dry pet foods and treats.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association