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This article is part of the supplement: Proceedings of the International Symposium on Animal Genomics for Animal Health (AGAH 2010)

Open Access Proceedings

Jejunal gene expression patterns correlate with severity of systemic infection in chicken

Dirkjan Schokker1*, Mari A Smits1 and Johanna MJ Rebel2

Author affiliations

1 Wageningen UR Livestock Research, Animal Breeding and Genomics Centre, Lelystad, P.O. Box 65, 8200 AB, The Netherlands

2 Central Veterinary Institute, Wageningen UR, Lelystad, P.O. Box 65, 8200 AB, The Netherlands

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Citation and License

BMC Proceedings 2011, 5(Suppl 4):S4  doi:10.1186/1753-6561-5-S4-S4

Published: 3 June 2011

Abstract

Background

Not much is known about the effect of Salmonella enteritidis on changes in the developmental processes occurring in the intestine of young chicken. Therefore we investigated the correlation of intestinal gene expression patterns with the severity of systemic Salmonella infections.

Methods

The number of Salmonella colony forming units (CFUs) in the liver of infected chicken were plotted against the average intestinal expression profiles of previously identified gene expression clusters. The functional properties of all the genes taken together present in 3 clusters exhibiting positive correlation at early time-points were compared with the functional properties of the genes displaying antagonistic correlations in 1 cluster. The top 5 ranking functional groups were analysed in further detail.

Results

Three clusters showed gene expression profiles which were positively correlated with the severity of systemic disease as measured by the number of Salmonella colony forming units in the liver. In these clusters, genes involved in morphological processes were predominantly present. One cluster had a profile that was negatively correlated with the severity of systemic disease, as measured by numbers of CFUs in the liver. The genes in the latter cluster were mostly involved in cell turn-over and metabolism.

Conclusions

In the developing jejunum of young chicken, both stimulatory and inhibitory gene expression mechanisms are correlated with the severity of systemic Salmonella infections.