Effects of iodine in water on intestinal microbial communities of chickens and other livestock animals

Funding Details
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
  • Grant type: Engage Plus Grants Program
  • Year: 2016/17
  • Total Funding: $12,500
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Project Summary

Recent years have seen a dramatic increase in the incidence of antibiotic resistant bacterial pathogens. Thisproblem is attributed in part to widespread prophylactic antibiotic treatment in livestock animals since the1950s. Because of this, significant effort has been dedicated to developing alternative methods to antibiotic usein livestock. Iodinated water has been identified as a strong candidate for a prophylactic treatment of pathogensin livestock, since iodine has a well-established antibacterial function and is known to be safe for consumptionby humans and animals. However, little research has been done to characterize what effect(s) consumption ofiodinated water has on either 1) colonization of livestock animals' gastrointestinal (GI) tract by bacterialpathogens or 2) composition of the natural microbial community of livestock animals' GI tracts. This study isaimed at elucidating what impact regular consumption of iodinated water has on the composition of theintestinal microbiome in broiler chicks and on survival to challenge by Salmonella sp. The iodinated waterused in this study will be produced by an iSan water iodination system provided by the partner companyBioLargo Water, Inc., which specializes in iodine-based water purification technologies. The results of theseexperiments will then be related to changes in overall health of the broiler chicks in order to inform on theviability of iodinated water as an alternative to antibiotic use in livestock.