The immune reaction in poultry lungs
Doctoral Candidate Eveline de Geus has studied the immune system in the lungs of chickens. Many pathogens, such as avian influenza virus (AIV, also known as ‘bird flu’), infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), Newcastle disease virus (NDV) or the bacteria E. coli infect chickens via the mucous membranes in the respiratory tract. In order to limit or prevent the spread of these infections to other animals or humans, vaccines must be developed that can offer a high degree of protection in the respiratory tract. Thanks to the research conducted by Eveline de Geus, researchers will be able to better focus their efforts in the development or improvement of vaccines.
Since infection largely occurs via the lungs, it is vital that the immune system can bring the infection under control as soon as it enters the respiratory tract. Until now, scientists have known little about the immune system in the lungs and respiratory tracts of poultry and other birds, in part because the structure of bird lungs differs so much from that of mammals. In order to develop new vaccines that are suitable for administering via the respiratory tract, researchers will therefore require more knowledge about the immune system in the respiratory tract of birds, especially poultry.
During her doctoral studies, De Geus conducted fundamental research into the immune system in the lungs of poultry and the immune reaction to avian influenza in the lungs. She then conducted vaccination tests in which she administered simple and inexpensive avian flu vaccines via the respiratory tract and then examined whether immune reactions occurred in the lungs. These tests indicated that such reactions do indeed take place.
|Date and time:
||University Hall, Domplein 29, Utrecht
||Eveline de Geus
||Faculty of Veterinary Medicine
||Respiratory immune responses in the chicken; Towards development of mucosal avian influenza virus vaccines
||Prof. Willem van Eden, PhD
||Dr. ir. Lonneke Vervelde
||Dr. Annemarie Rebel