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Open AccessArticle

Impact of Bacteriophage-Supplemented Drinking Water on the E. coli Population in the Chicken Gut

1
Institute for Food Quality and Food Safety, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Foundation, Bischofsholer Damm 15, 30173 Hannover, Germany
2
Food Inspection, Animal Welfare and Veterinary Service of the Land of Bremen, Border Control Post Bremerhaven, Senator-Borttscheller-Straße 8, 27568 Bremerhaven, Germany
3
Leibniz Institute DSMZ—German Collection of Microorganisms and Cell Cultures, Inhoffenstraße 7B, 38124 Braunschweig, Germany
4
Institute for Hazardous Materials Research, Waldring 97, 44789 Bochum, Germany
5
Clinic for Poultry, University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Foundation, Bünteweg 17, 30559 Hannover, Germany
6
PTC Phage Technology Center GmbH, Siemensstraße 42, 59199 Bönen, Germany
7
Institute for Veterinary Food Science, Justus-Liebig-University Giessen, Frankfurter Straße 92, 35392 Giessen, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this paper.
Main contributor, but has passed away.
Pathogens 2020, 9(4), 293; https://doi.org/10.3390/pathogens9040293
Received: 8 March 2020 / Revised: 30 March 2020 / Accepted: 13 April 2020 / Published: 16 April 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Vaccines and Therapeutic Developments)
Among intestinal coliform microbes in the broiler gut, there are potentially pathogenic Escherichia (E.) coli that can cause avian colibacillosis. The treatment with antibiotics favors the selection of multidrug-resistant bacteria and an alternative to this treatment is urgently required. A chicken model of intestinal colonization with an apathogenic model strain of E. coli was used to test if oral phage application can prevent or reduce the gut colonization of extraintestinal pathogenic E. coli variants in two individual experiments. The E. coli strain E28 was used as a model strain, which could be differentiated from other E. coli strains colonizing the broiler gut, and was susceptible to all cocktail phages applied. In the first trial, a mixture of six phages was continuously applied via drinking water. No reduction of the model E. coli strain E28 occurred, but phage replication could be demonstrated. In the second trial, the applied mixture was limited to the four phages, which showed highest efficacy in vitro. E. coli colonization was reduced in this trial, but again, no reduction of the E. coli strain E28 was observed. The results of the trials presented here can improve the understanding of the effect of phages on single strains in the multi-strain microbiota of the chicken gut. View Full-Text
Keywords: E. coli; ExPEC; phages; bacteriophages; microbiota; chicken microflora; colibacillosis; multidrug resistance E. coli; ExPEC; phages; bacteriophages; microbiota; chicken microflora; colibacillosis; multidrug resistance
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Kittler, S.; Mengden, R.; Korf, I.H.E.; Bierbrodt, A.; Wittmann, J.; Plötz, M.; Jung, A.; Lehnherr, T.; Rohde, C.; Lehnherr, H.; Klein, G.; Kehrenberg, C. Impact of Bacteriophage-Supplemented Drinking Water on the E. coli Population in the Chicken Gut. Pathogens 2020, 9, 293.

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