Intestinal and systemic immune development and response to vaccination are unaffected by dietary (1,3/1,6)-β-D-glucan supplementation in neonatal piglets


Infants are susceptible to infections in early life and must rely on their innate immune system for protection. β-Glucans potentiate immune responses. Therefore, we evaluated the influence of purified yeast (1,3/1,6)-β-D- glucan (Wellmune WGP, here referred to as WGP) on the development of the gastrointestinal tract and the intestinal and systemic immune systems in neonatal piglets. Piglets were fed formula containing 0 (control), 1.8, 18, or 90 mg WGP/kg body weight (BW) and were vaccinated against human influenza. Piglets were euthanized at 7 or 21 days of age. Piglet weight and small intestinal length and weight were unaffected by dietary WGP. In addition, WGP did not affect ileal crypt depth, villus height, or ascending colon cuff depth. Immune parameters not affected by WGP supplementation included T cell phenotypes, cytokine gene expression, and cell proliferation. However, vaccination and developmental effects were seen. Overall, the doses of 1.8, 18, and 90 mg/kg BW of dietary WGP had no effect on intestinal or immune development and did not improve the antibody response to vaccination in neonatal piglets. Copyright © 2012, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.

Publication Title

Clinical and Vaccine Immunology