In poultry production intestinal health and function is paramount to achieving efficient feed utilisation and growth. Uncovering the localised molecular mechanisms that occur during the early and important periods of growth that allow birds to grow optimally is important for this species. The exposure of young chicks to used litter from older flocks, containing mixed microbial populations, is a widely utilised model in poultry research. It rarely causes mortality but effects an immunogenic stimulation sufficient enough to cause reduced and uneven growth that is reflective of a challenging growing environment.
O'Reilly, EL., Burchmore, RJ., Sparks, NHC., & Eckersall, PD. (2017). The effect of microbial challenge on the intestinal proteome of broiler chickens. Proteome Science, 15, . https://doi.org/10.1186/s12953-017-0118-0