Bacteriophage therapy – broilers
With antibiotic resistance a growing global problem, it is more important than ever to seek alternative solutions to combat harmful bacterial infections.
Bacteriophage therapy, which uses viruses specific to a particular strain of bacteria to target and kill the infection, is one such potential solution.
In a recent study of broiler chickens infected with pathogenic E. coli, bacteriophage therapy was found to have a positive effect on weight gain and feed conversion, and to reduce the bacterial load in the birds.
While more research is needed to better understand the efficacy and safety of this approach, bacteriophage therapy is a promising alternative for controlling bacterial infections in poultry and other livestock operations.
These findings were published in the article Bacteriophage therapy as an alternative biocontrol against emerging multidrug resistant E. coli in broilers on 29 May 2022 by the authors Samah Eid, Hala M N Tolba, Rehab I Hamed, and Nayera M Al-Atfeehy.
- 26 E. coli isolates were found in 50 tested samples from diseased broiler chickens in 10 chicken farms.
- The antibiogram results showed that the E. coli isolates were resistant to ampicillin , amoxicillin and tetracycline with a high percentage of 100%.
- Biofilm quantification analysis showed that 24/26 (92.3%) isolates were classified as biofilm producers.
- Characterization and lytic activity of bacteriophages was performed by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and showed the greatest lytic activity against the host strains studied with effective activity at a concentration of 107 after 24 hrs.
- The result of the experimental infection showed that the performance indicators of phages in the treated and challenged group showed highly significant increase in body weight, weight gain and FCR compared to the antibiotic treated and bacteriophage and antibiotic treated group.
Avian pathogenic Escherichia coli (APEC) is considered a severe issue to both poultry business and health of the general public.
In that context, 50 samples from 250 diseased broiler chickens in 10 chicken farms were employed to Escherichia coli isolation.
Microbiological techniques were employed to detect isolates of E. coli from 250 diseased broiler chickens which were examined by antimicrobial susceptibility profiles against 11 antimicrobial agents using disc diffusion technique as well as their biofilm forming capacity were detected.
In addition to, study the isolation and purification of phages based on spot technique to verify that lytic phages are present in E. coli isolates and plaque assay for titration of bacteriophages.
In the present research, we also looked at the ability of bacteriophages to inhibit and dissolve previously formed biofilms by E. coli O78 isolate.
Moreover, experimental testing of E. coli O78 bacteriophages for colibacillosis prevention and control in one day old broiler chicks were done.
The obtained results showed that twenty-six E. coli isolates out of 50 examined samples were isolated (10.4%). The most prevalent serotypes were O78, O121:H7, O146:H2, O124, O113:H4, O112:H2, O1:H7, O55:H7, O2:H6, O91:H21, O26:H11.
Antibiogram results demonstrated the resistance of E. coli isolates with high percentage 100% were against, Ampicillin, Amoxicillin and Tetracycline. Biofilm quantification analysis showed that 24/26 (92.3%) isolates were considered biofilm producer isolates.
The characterization and the lytic activity of bacteriophage were performed based on Transmission electron microscopy and showed the greatest lytic activity against the evaluated host strains with effective activity at concentration of 107 at 24 h and strong significant reduction of the established E. coli O 78 biofilm within 12 h.
The result of experimental infection showed that the performance indicators of phage in treated and challenged group showed high significant increase in body weight, weight gain and improved FCR than infected -antibiotic treated and infected bacteriophage and antibiotic treated.
Total viable cell counts of E. coli in the lungs of birds revealed that there is highly significant difference between the six groups count results. We concluded that phage therapy found to be an attractive option to prevent and control multidrug resistant colibacillosis in broilers.
Keywords: APEC; Antibiotic resistance; Bacteriophage; Biofilm; Escherichia coli; Phage therapy.
© 2022 The Authors.