Prof. Gunther ANTONISSEN
Gunther Antonissen is appointed as chairholder of the Chair Poultry Health Sciences at Ghent University. The poultry research of the group of prof. Antonissen is multidisciplinary, focusing on a better understanding of the pathogenesis of infectious and non-infectious diseases, improving diagnostics, improving animal welfare and demonstrating the efficacy and safety of prevention and treatment strategies.
Current research is related to mycotoxins (e.g. impact on animal and human health, interaction of mycotoxins and infectious diseases, mechanism of action and safety of detoxifying agents), gut health (e.g. diagnostics, impact early nutrition), host-pathogen interaction, antimicrobial resistance, and poultry welfare (e.g. monitoring and interventions).
Furthermore, prof. Antonissen is also the initiator and coordinator of the new Postgraduate in Poultry Health Sciences at Ghent University.
Development of reliable biomarkers for monitoring gut health in poultry
Disturbances of the intestinal tract function are common in poultry and are the major challenge to the broiler production today.
Gut health problems in broiler chickens mainly arise from different stressors a.o. high feed intake, high dietary levels of non-starch polysaccharides (NSP), coccidiosis, EU ban on antimicrobial growth promoters, environmental stressors (e.g. heat stress), and feed-related toxins (e.g. mycotoxins), resulting in inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract and dysbiosis.
Recently, advances in biomedical research technologies have enabled important steps forward in the understanding and monitoring of the pathophysiology of dysbiosis and gastro-intestinal inflammation, including the development of biomarkers. The development of reliable gut health biomarkers would be beneficial for measuring and controlling intestinal inflammation and barrier function.
In this presentation the recent advances in the field of intestinal health biomarkers in poultry medicine will be discussed.