Sign up now!
Don't show this again
Sweepstakes Rules

We’re glad you’re enjoying Poultry Health Today.
Access is free but you’ll need to register to view more content.
Already registered? Sign In
Tap to download the app
REPORTSCollect articles and features into your own report to read later, print or share with others

Create a New Report


Read Later

Create a new report

Report title (required) Brief description (optional)
follow us

You must be logged in to edit your profile.

Favorites Read Later My Reports PHT Special Reports
Poultry Health Today is equipped with some amazing (and free) tools for organizing and sharing content, as well as creating your own magazines and special reports. To access them, please register today.
Sponsored by Zoetis

Sponsored By Zoetis

PHTweb Probiotics Bobeck 521658210

Nutritionist: Understanding probiotics is key to managing them effectively in poultry

With the ever-increasing shift to “no-antibiotics-ever” (NAE) production, probiotics have become more common in poultry diets, said Elizabeth Bobeck, PhD, a nutritional immunology expert and associate professor at Iowa State University.

“Probiotics have been successfully used to prevent or ameliorate digestive and metabolic disorders, but the mechanisms of action of probiotics are diverse, heterogenous and strain-specific,” she said.

Probiotics defined

Probiotics are living microorganisms that “confer health benefits when administered to the host in adequate amounts,” Bobeck explained during a presentation at the Midwest Poultry Conference.

“Mechanisms of action include normalization of perturbed microbial communities, competitive exclusion of pathogens, modulation of biliary salt, short-chain fatty acid production and enzymatic activation, intestinal physiological changes and immunoregulation.

“Prebiotics, on the other hand, are a group of nutrients that can be degraded by gut microbiota into short-chain fatty acids, which interact with the local gastrointestinal tract and can also be used systemically,” she continued.

Complex interplay

There is a complex interplay within host species, based on strain, feed, manure ecology, age and other production and management factors, Bobeck noted. “As a result, individual bird microbiomes may tend to resemble each other within a particular building but will be diverse across production sites.”

The avian host, the diet being fed and litter microbiome all impact the gut microbiome, Bobeck said. Gut microbes influence intestinal morphology and physiology and interact with the hosts’ immune systems.

Dietary components and some antimicrobials modify the gut microbiome, while prebiotics favor the growth of beneficial bacteria.

The litter microbiome affects the gut microbiome as chickens continually take up microorganisms from the litter. In addition, intestinal bacteria in a chicken’s excreta influence the litter microbiome. A research study in which Bobeck participated showed how eggshell and environmental bacteria contribute to the intestinal microbiota of growing chickens.

Different responses

“Chickens and turkeys have distinct intestinal microbiomes, sharing only 16% similarity at a species-equivalent level,” she said. “The most predominant genera found in both chickens and turkeys were Clostridium, Ruminococcus, Lactobacillus and Bacteroides, but with different distribution between the two bird species.

“The gut microbiome plays a key role in development of the host’s intestinal morphology and immune function, importantly for both innate and adaptive immune features,” Bobeck added.

“Because of the diversity in probiotic type, dose, mode of action and complexity, combined with poultry strain and conditions, commercial settings may not all respond similarly to dietary or water-based probiotic inclusions,” Bobeck said. “And because most probiotics do not colonize the host, it is important to use them in a continuous and long-term fashion to see the most benefit.”


Shareicon Pht 1
Share It
With the ever-increasing shift to “no-antibiotics-ever” (NAE) production, probiotics have become more common in poultry diets, said Elizabeth Bobeck, PhD, a nutritional immunology expert and associate professor at Iowa State University.

Click an icon to share this information with your industry contacts.

Posted on December 22, 2022

tags: , ,

You must be logged in to edit your profile.

Google Translate is provided on this website as a reference tool. However, Poultry Health Today and its sponsor and affiliates do not guarantee in any way the accuracy of the translated content and are not responsible for any event resulting from the use of the translation provided by Google. By choosing a language other than English from the Google Translate menu, the user agrees to withhold all liability and/or damage that may occur to the user by depending on or using the translation by Google.