During the 2023 International Production & Processing Expo (IPPE), four researchers presented their findings from recently completed research projects funded by the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association (USPOULTRY) and its Foundation as part of the TECHTalks sessions offered during the Expo. All the researchers’ presentations have been made available on USPOULTRY’s YouTube channel and can be viewed at www.youtube.com/USPOULTRY.
Dr. Chongxiao Chen, assistant professor/extension specialist with the University of Georgia Department of Poultry Science, presented research findings on “Methods for Preventing Blackhead Disease in Poultry.” He gave an overview of the disease and remarked that the transmission is usually from turkey to turkey in the feces that carry the Histomonas meleagridis, making the oral-fecal route possible for the infection and/or transmission of Histomonas meleagridis. Chen stated, “Reducing stress factors during production may help to decrease the severity of histomoniasis outbreaks, and nutrition plays an important role in the disease progression. But there is still the need to find a therapeutic treatment for histomoniasis.”
As part of his research findings on the “Pathogenicity and Genetic Profile of Turkey Hepatitis Reovirus (THRV),” Dr. Sunil Mor, assistant professor in the Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences Department at South Dakota State University, compared the three types of disease – turkey enteric reovirus (TERV), turkey arthritis reovirus (TARV) and turkey hepatitis reovirus (THRV). He observed that whole genome sequencing analysis grouped THRVs with TARVs with no specific grouping of THRVs and no geographical specific group either. The serotyping and sequence-based grouping indicated that at least four main serotypes of THRVs are circulating. Mor mentioned, “THRV consistently induced tenosynovitis in inoculated poults, virtually identical to those caused by TARV.” This means the virus can cause hepatitis as well as arthritis in turkeys.
Dr. Li Zhang, assistant research professor in the Department of Poultry Science at Mississippi State University, provided information on a research study called, “Use of Comparative Genomics and In Vitro Screening Approach for the Identification of Vaccine Candidates for Food-Borne Pathogen Campylobacter Jejuni.” He discussed pre-harvest strategies to control Campylobacter in chicken. Zhang also revealed the outcome of the study, in which three potential vaccine candidates and new approaches for vaccine antigen selection were obtained.