The effect of moderate-dose aflatoxin B1 and Salmonella Enteritidis infection on intestinal permeability in broiler chickens

  • J. O. Hernández-Ramírez
  • M. J. Nava-Ramírez
  • R. Merino-Guzmán
  • G. Téllez-Isaías
  • A. Vázquez-Durán
  • A. Méndez-AlboresEmail author
Original Article


The effect of dietary aflatoxin B1 (AFB1) and Salmonella Enteritidis infection on intestinal permeability was investigated. Two hundred 1-day-old male Ross 308 broiler chickens were randomly divided into 4 treatments of 5 replicates each (10 birds per replicate), which were fed ad libitum for 3 weeks with the following treatments: control, chickens fed an AFB1-free diet; AF, chickens fed an AFB1-contaminated diet at 470 ng/g; SE, chickens fed an AFB1-free diet and challenged with 108 cfu of S. Enteritidis per bird at 18 days old; AF + SE, chickens fed an AFB1-contaminated diet and challenged with 108 cfu of S. Enteritidis per bird at 18 days old. At day 21 of age, chicks received an oral gavage dose of fluorescein isothiocyanate dextran (FITC-dextran) to evaluate gastrointestinal leakage. Blood and intestinal samples were collected to evaluate serum biochemistry and total intestinal IgA secretion, respectively. Liver tissues were aseptically collected to assess bacterial invasiveness and for histomorphological studies. The results showed that chickens receiving AFB1 presented a significant increment (up to 2.4-fold) in serum FITC-dextran concentration (p < 0.05). Nevertheless, S. Enteritidis infection had no additional effect on gastrointestinal leakage. Furthermore, the ingestion of AFB1 had no impact on the invasive potential of S. Enteritidis. These results suggest that moderate-dose AFB1 adversely affects intestinal barrier function resulting in increased gut permeability in broiler chickens.


Broilers B-Aflatoxins Salmonella Enteritidis Intestinal permeability Intestinal IgA 



J.O. Hernández-Ramírez acknowledges CONACyT for the Ph.D. scholarship (245747).

Funding information

This work was partially supported by Programa Interno de Apoyo para Proyectos de Investigacion (PIAPI) Grant number PIAPI-1806.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest



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Copyright information

© Society for Mycotoxin (Research Gesellschaft für Mykotoxinforschung e.V.) and Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Unidad de Investigación Multidisciplinaria L14 (Alimentos, Micotoxinas, y Micotoxicosis), Facultad de Estudios Superiores CuautitlánUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MéxicoMexico CityMexico
  2. 2.Departamento de Medicina y Zootecnia de Aves, Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria y ZootecniaUniversidad Nacional Autónoma de MexicoMexico CityMexico
  3. 3.Department of Poultry ScienceUniversity of ArkansasFayettevilleUSA

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