DIETARY ANTIOXIDANT SUPPLEMENTATION IMPROVES IMMUNE CELL ACTIVITY AND ANTIBODY PRODUCTION IN THE PUPPY
Objective: Dietary antioxidant supplementation on immune function in puppies was studied.
Design: Randomized block design, balanced for litter and gender.
Materials and Methods: Weaning beagle puppies (6 weeks of age) were randomly assigned to a control diet (CON; n=20) or antioxidant diet (ATX; n=20), and fed for 4 months with immune assessment done after 0, 2 and 4 months of feeding. Diet matrices were identical, however ATX contained 200 IU/kg vitamin E, 20mg/kg lutein and 20mg/kg ß-carotene as antioxidants.
Results: Mitogenic responses to Concanavalin A, Phytohemagglutinin, and Pokeweed mitogen were significantly (p<0.05) higher in ATX verses CON at 2 and 4 months of feeding. After 4 months feeding, ATX had significantly (p<0.05) higher vaccine titers to distemper and parvovirus. ATX produced significantly (p<0.05) more immunoglobulin M to a sheep red blood cell challenge versus CON.
Conclusion: Beagle puppies fed a diet supplemented with antioxidants had improved immune cell activity and antibody production.
Funding provided by The Iams Company, Lewisburg, OH.