Passively administered antibodies alleviate stunting syndrome in turkey poults

Don Reynolds, Sevinc Akinc, Ali Akbar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Stunting syndrome is an enteric disease of young turkeys that results in reduced growth (stunting) of poults and impaired feed efficiency. A virus, which has been termed the stunting syndrome agent (SSA), causes stunting syndrome. In this study passive immunity was evaluated as a method of protecting poults from stunting syndrome. One-day-old poults were injected with either tryptose phosphate broth, an anti-SSA antibody preparation, or an anti-Newcastle disease virus antibody preparation before challenge by placing them into SSA-contaminated isolators or control (nonchallenge) isolators. Poults that received anti-SSA antibodies were significantly heavier (P < 0.05) and did not display as severe clinical disease compared to birds that did not receive the anti-SSA antibodies. However, the birds that received anti-SSA antibodies and were challenged were significantly lighter (P < 0.05) than birds that were not challenged. The results of this trial demonstrate that the injection of anti-SSA antibodies benefitted poults undergoing stunting syndrome. The role of passive immunity, either through breeder hen vaccination or through supplying antibodies to poults artificially (i.e., at the hatchery), may have future applications in alleviating stunting syndrome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)439-442
Number of pages4
JournalAvian diseases
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • Passive immunity
  • Poult enteritis
  • Stunting syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Animals
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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