Salmonellosis is a zoonosis that is not only harmful to the health of poultry but also poses a threat to human health. Although many measures have been put in place to reduce morbidity, they have not provided satisfactory results. Therefore, it is necessary to clarify the immune mechanisms involved in improving the resistance of chickens against Salmonella. BTB (Broad-complex Tramtrack and Bric-a-brac) Speckle-type POZ (poxvirus and zinc finger) protein (SPOP) regulates protein expression by promoting substrate ubiquitination and degradation. The correlation between SPOP expression and the immune response has not been fully described. Therefore, the aim of this study was to clarify this relationship. In vitro, we stimulated chicken macrophage cells (HD11) with lipopolysaccharide, then analyzed the correlation between SPOP and IL1β or IL8 expression using quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qRT-PCR). In vivo, we infected 7-days-old chickens with Salmonella Typhimurium, then analyzed the association between SPOP expression and the immune response, including IL1β and IL8 expression, IgA production, and bacterial loads. We found that SPOP may participate in the regulation of the immune response in macrophage cells. SPOP expression was negatively correlated with IL-1β and IL-8 expression both in vivo and in vitro. SPOP expression was also negatively related to bacterial loads and immunoglobulin (Ig) A production. These results indicate that SPOP may have important functions in the response to Salmonella infection.
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