Inflammation a double-edged sword
On previous articles we have talked about different systems of the avian body and some of the challenges that can have a direct effect on them. Most of these problems have one aspect in common which can affect the animals’ path to a perfection through harmony: Inflammation.
Inflammation, the unwanted response?
Even though the concept of inflammation is always linked to a negative process, inflammation is not always something undesirable. Seen from the biological point of view, inflammation is a protective response of the animal body to an external stimulus which is harmful and will play an important role in the life of the animals since it’s the first step in the healing process. This process aims to eliminate a negative stimulus and start the repairment of the tissue that has been affected.
During this first attempt to control a problem, below five cardinal signs of inflammation might be present:
All these signs will help the animal to protect the tissue against greater damage and help suppress the negative effect of the external stimuli.
The inflammation process
Inflammation start with the innate immune cells that are present in the affected area. This cells will recognize that there is a certain tissue or cell damage thanks to different pattern receptors. This receptors can be stimulated by microbial molecules or host-derived molecules that indicate the presence of an unwanted substance in the body or directly signalize cell damage. This response should be fast and efficient to control the problem, and depending on the length and outcome of the process it can be divided in two types:
- Acute: If the inflammation persist for a short period of time it will be consider an acute inflammation process and will end with the resolution of the problem fast.
- Chronic: In case the immune response fails to eliminate the reason for the inflammation; this will become a chronic process and can last for longer periods of time, varying from weeks to years.
This two types of inflammation can have a positive and a negative effect depending on the course of inflammation
Inflammation is a complex cascade of mediators and enzymatic reactions that will result in multiple beneficial but also unwanted responses. The usage of anti-inflammatory compounds will help to block certain paths of the inflammation cascade, at diverse points of it. In the image below you will find a graphic representation of the inflammation cascade and the different paths that play a role in the inflammatory process. It all starts with the disruption cell membrane due to a negative stimulus, this damage will release membrane phospholipids which leads to an increased production or arachidonic acid. Arachidonic acid promotes the production of the cyclooxygenase (COX) enzymes and Arachidonate 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX); resulting in elevated prostaglandins (PGI), thromboxanes (TXA) and leukotrienes (LT).
Inflammation a double-edged sword
Even though inflammation is meant to help the body to fight against unwanted stimuli, and with this be beneficial for the animal body; there will be a cost for it, usually reflected in the performance of the animals.
The immune response in the animal body has a high energy and nutrient cost for the organism. When an acute inflammation occurs the need of nutrients and energy will be not excessive and the unwanted stimuli will be controlled fast. But if the inflammation persists for longer periods of time (chronic) this hijacking of nutrients will have a strong effect on the animal’s general performance, which will translate in economical loss for the producer.
Not only the movement of nutrients will play an important role in the “cost “of inflammation, but there are multiple studies that show that inside of the inflammation process there are various inflammatory mediators which can suppress appetite and with that contribute to a reduced nutrient bioavailability for production.
The fight against inflammation
While inflammation is an important process in the animals body, the loss that come with it has pushed producers to search for different ways of reducing it and select anti-inflammatory products; being one of them antimicrobial growth promotors (AGP). Even though AGPs might have a positive effect in the fight against inflammation, using AGPs on animal production brings multiple negative effects: specially the increment of antibiotic resistant bacteria. TO avoid this problem producers have opted to search and utilize Non-Antibiotic Growth Promotes (NAGP) in their productions. The Non-Antibiotic Growth Promoters will help to reduce inflammation, by breaking the inflammation cascade and minimizing the pro-inflammatory mediators, which will be the ones that create a reaction in the body. Depending on the mode of action and the intended effect, there are various substances that can have effect on this cascade. By blocking the COX path, there will be a reduction in inflammation pain and fever, but also a small secondary effect that affect the gastrointestinal cells and the platelets activity, being one of the most well-known anti-cox medicaments acetylsalicylic acid. While 5-LOX path is reduced, there will be a lower inflammation and gastric lesion. Therefore, the best strategy would bestopping the inflammation cascade in multiple pathways- giving a better chance of controlling or reducing inflammation; including considerable benefits for the animal.
Solutions from XVET
In XVET, we count on multiple products that can reduce inflammation and have different ingredients that will help animals to reach a better performance:
- 42 Degree and 42 Degree P utilizing multiple ingredients with anti-inflammatory properties that block inflammatory enzymes.
- Metavolin Herbal – helps to prevent inflammation in the liver
- XVET NAGP products; such as OregoPlus, Aromax and Garvit Pro, utilizing the properties of essential oils and extract to reduce inflammation and work as a non-antibiotic growth promotor.