Gene expression responses to a Salmonella infection in the chicken intestine differ between lines

S. van Hemert, A.J.W. Hoekman, M.A. Smits, J.M.J. Rebel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


Poultry products are an important source of Salmonella enterica. An effective way to reduce food poisoning due to Salmonella would be to breed chickens more resistant to Salmonella. Unfortunately host responses to Salmonella are complex with many factors involved. To learn more about responses to Salmonella in young chickens, a cDNA microarray analysis was performed to compare gene expression profiles between two chicken lines under control and Salmonella infected conditions. Newly hatched chickens were orally infected with S. enterica serovar Enteritidis. Since the intestine is the first barrier the bacteria encounter after oral inoculation, intestinal gene expression was investigated at different timepoints. Differences in gene expression between the two chicken lines were found in control as well as Salmonella infected conditions. In response to the Salmonella infection a fast growing chicken broiler line induced genes that affect T-cell activation, whereas in a slow growing broiler line genes involved in macrophage activation seemed to be more affected at day I post-infection. At days 7 and 9 most gene expression differences between the two chicken lines were identified under control conditions, indicating a difference in the intestinal development between the two chicken lines which might be linked to the difference in Salmonella susceptibility. The findings in this study have lead to the identification of novel genes and possible cellular pathways, which are host dependent. (c) 2006 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)247-258
JournalVeterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006


  • messenger-rna expression
  • natural-resistance
  • immune-response
  • host responses
  • broiler lines
  • enteritidis
  • poultry
  • macrophage
  • mice
  • polymorphisms


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