Effects of Fungal Polysaccharide on Oxidative Damage and TLR4 Pathway to the Central Immune Organs in Cadmium Intoxication in Chickens

  • Ruyue Li
  • Linan Zhang
  • Zequn Tang
  • Tianqi Li
  • Guangxing Li
  • Ruili ZhangEmail author
  • Ming GeEmail author


Cadmium (Cd) can cause animal organism damage, but there have been few studies on the damage of cadmium to the immune organs of birds. Most fungal polysaccharide has antioxidant and immunomodulatory effects. The experimental study investigated the effects of fungal polysaccharide (Agaricus blazei Murill polysaccharide and Ganoderma luciduccharide) on the oxidative damage of central immune organs (thymus and bursa of Fabricius) and on the Toll-like receptor 4 (TLR4) pathway in cadmium-poisoned chickens. The results showed that Agaricus blazei polysaccharide and Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharide can reduce cadmium content, TLR4 expression, inflammatory factor (IL-1β, IL-6, TNF-α) content, and lipid peroxidation product MDA content and increase the activity of antioxidant enzymes SOD and GSH-Px in thymus and bursa of cadmium poisoning chickens. Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharide could decrease the expression of TLR4, IL-1β, and IL-6 in cadmium poisoning peripheral blood lymphocytes of chicken, and TLR4 inhibitor had the same effect. The results demonstrated the protective effects of Agaricus blazei Murill polysaccharide and Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharides on the damage of the central immune organs of chickens caused by cadmium poisoning were closely related to the TLR4 signaling pathway and oxidative stress.


Cadmium Fungal polysaccharide Chicken TLR4 signaling pathway Antioxidants Immune organs 



We thank the members of the Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine Laboratory at the College of Veterinary Medicine, Northeast Agricultural University.

Funding Information

This work was supported by the National Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 31272533).

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Ethical treatment of animals used in this study was approved by the Animal Welfare Committee protocol (#NEAU-2013-02-0252-11) at Northeast Agricultural University (Harbin, China).

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


All authors have read the manuscript and agreed to submit it in its current form for consideration for publication in the journal.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Veterinary MedicineNortheast Agricultural UniversityHarbinChina
  2. 2.Key Laboratory of the Provincial Education Department of Heilongjiang for Common Animal Disease Prevention and TreatmentNortheast Agricultural UniversityHarbinChina

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