Effects of the Probiotic Candidate E. faecalis-1, the Poulvac E. coli Vaccine, and their Combination on Growth Performance, Caecal Microbial Composition, Immune Response, and Protection against E. coli O78 Challenge in Broiler Chickens

  • Reda TarabeesEmail author
  • Mohamed S. El-Sayed
  • Awad A. Shehata
  • Mohamed S. Diab


The present study was performed on 180-day-old commercial Cobb chicks to assess the effects of the probiotic candidate Enterococcus faecalis-1, the Poulvac Escherichia coli vaccine, and their combination on growth parameters, intestinal microbial composition, immune response, and protection against challenge with the avian pathogen E. coli O78. The experimental groups were as follows: G1, basal diet; G2, basal diet and challenge with O78 at 28 days of growth; G3, basal diet, vaccination with Poulvac (1 and 15 days), and challenge with O78 at 28 days of growth; G4, basal diet, E. faecalis-1 supplementation for the first 3 days of growth, and challenge with O78 at 28 days of growth; G5, basal diet, E. faecalis-1 supplementation for the first 3 days of growth, vaccination with Poulvac (1 and 15 days), and challenge with O78 at 28 days of growth; G6, basal diet and E. faecalis-1 supplementation for the first 3 days of growth. The results showed that E. faecalis-1 in drinking water significantly improved the growth performance and immune response, increased the total Enterococcus counts, reduced the mortality, and decreased the visceral invasion by O78 in challenged broilers. While the effect of the Poulvac vaccine alone or with E. faecalis-1 was not significant compared with that of the E. faecalis-1 supplement, the vaccine improved the growth rate and decreased the mortality and visceral invasion by APEC O78 in challenged broilers. These results showed that E. faecalis-1 supplementation and routine vaccination with the Poulvac vaccine could improve the growth performance and immune response of broiler chickens and protect against challenge with APEC O78.


E. faecalis-1 Poulvac E. coli Growth performance Immune response Intestinal microbiota APEC O78 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.


The authors declare that the manuscript has not been published and is not under consideration for publication elsewhere.


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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Bacteriology, Mycology, and Immunology, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineUniversity of Sadat CitySadat CityEgypt
  2. 2.Department of Birds and Rabbit Diseases, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineUniversity of Sadat CitySadat CityEgypt
  3. 3.Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Albrecht-Daniel-Thaer-InstituteUniversity of LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  4. 4.Department of Animal Hygiene and Zoonoses, Faculty of Veterinary MedicineNew Valley UniversityNew Valley GovernorateEgypt

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