Mixed Probiotic Reduces Campylobacter Colonisation in Chicks

GLOBAL - An international collaboration of scientists has shown, in two experiments, a reduction in caecal colonisation by Campylobacter jejuni in broiler chicks after the administration of an avian-specific probiotic.
calendar icon 10 September 2012
clock icon 3 minute read

Campylobacteriosis is the most frequent zoonotic disease in humans worldwide, and the contaminated poultry meat by Campylobacter jejuni can be considered one of the important sources of enteric infections in humans, according to K. Ghareeb of the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna, Austria and co-authors there and at Egypt's South Valley University, CESAC in Reus, Spain and Biomin Holding and Research Center.

In their paper in Poultry Science, they continue that the use of probiotics, which can help to improve the natural defences of animals against pathogenic bacteria, is an alternative and effective approach to antibiotic administration for livestock to reduce bacterial contamination.

In-vitro experiments showed that Enterococcus faecium, Pediococcus acidilactici, Lactobacillus salivarius and Lactobacillus reuteri isolated from healthy chicken gut inhibited the growth of C. jejuni. To demonstrate this effect in vivo, day-old broiler chicks each received 2mg per day of a multi-species probiotic product via the drinking water. Controls received no probiotic treatment, and all chicks were infected with C. jejuni orally.

Results showed that the caecal colonisation by C. jejuni was significantly reduced by probiotic treatment at both eight and 15 days post-challenge.

To confirm this effect, in a second in-vivo experiment, day-old broiler chicks received the same dose of the same probiotic via the drinking water and controls received no probiotic, and all chicks were infected with C. jejuni orally. Similarly, probiotic treatment reduced (P=0.001) caecal colonisation by C. jejuni at both eight and 15 days post-challenge.

The research concluded that the results of their in-vivo experiments show probiotic administration reduced the colonisation of C. jejuni in broiler chickens.


Ghareeb, K., W.A. Awad, M. Mohn, R. Porta, M. Biarnés, J. Böhm and G. Schatzmayr. 2012. Evaluating the efficacy of an avian-specific probiotic to reduce the colonization of Campylobacter jejuni in broiler chickens. Poult. Sci., 91(8):1825-1832. doi: 10.3382/ps.2012-02168

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