Immunity and antioxidant status
The immune system has evolved over millions and millions of years as an extremely potent and efficient defence mechanism directed towards a single goal; to keep us healthy. The primary function of the immune system is to protect the body against infections by pathogenic viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. It also plays a key role in preventing and repairing (oxidative) damage caused by stress due to environmental factors such as irradiation, sub-optimal temperatures, (drink) water quality, toxins and human handling. Occasionally, the immune system may overreact or be brought out of balance. Such imbalances can result in immune disorders like low-grade inflammation (e.g arthritis, gingivitis), allergies or other health conditions. The immune system can be suppressed, resulting in reduced overall resistance to (pathogenic) infections. Therefore a properly functioning immune system is essential for good health of all animal species.
Three major principles of immunity are common to all living creatures; recognition, processing and elimination of threats. The immune system needs to recognise the invading danger (by distinguishing between self and non-self), process this information and eliminate the threat. All animals should stay healthy by employing these ‘simple’ principles.
An organism that can cause disease is called a pathogen. The virulence of a pathogen varies greatly and depends on its ability to evade the body’s defences. The body’s defences include physical barriers (e.g. skin, intestinal wall, mucous) that exclude invaders, innate immunity (a-specific) that provides rapid initial protection and adaptive (specific) immunity that provides prolonged effective immunity. A properly functioning immune system can distinguish between pathogens and their own healthy tissue.
Whilst the importance of a well-functioning immune system is evident, multiple examples of sub-optimal immunity are often observed. Immune suppression by, for example, stress, medication or ageing can make animals more susceptible to infectious diseases or other immune-related problems. A proper antioxidant status will support the animal during challenges where oxidative stress is present, for example, the release of reactive oxygen species (ROS) during immunological infections. Imbalances of the immune status can result in allergic reactions, (chronic) inflammations or auto-immune diseases. Optimisation of the immune response can be beneficial in the case of many health issues.
Feed additives can play a role in the support and optimization of the immune status of animals. Feed additives can act as immunomodulators, have anti-inflammatory effects, support the antioxidant status and have a (direct) anti-pathogenic effect. From different angles, feed additives are able to optimize the immune status of production and companion animals, resulting in an improved animal health status.
Supporting pig performance with L-selenomethionine
Pig Progress, May 2022Selenium has various functions with regard to pig health. The effects of selenium can be long lasting and depend on the source of selenium supplied to the animals. That applies to finisher pigs as well as sows and piglets.11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2022
Beta-1,3/1,6-glucans promote well-being of obese dogs
Pet Food Supplement, May 2022Obesity can be considered as one of the most common nutritional disorders in dogs and cats. Caloric restriction is often the solution to lose excessive weight, however success is difficult as the four-legged fellow, with friendly eyes, will beg for more food from his owner.c56ce7dc-9920-415d-bdcc-89d154382b9d2022
7 reasons to replace inorganic trace minerals
Dairy Global, February 2022Trace elements such as copper (Cu), manganese (Mn) and zinc (Zn) are of great importance for optimal health and performance. These elements perform crucial functions in the animals’ metabolism as a cofactor for multiple metalloenzymes, and deficiencies can lead to a range of disorders.e9f930e8-798d-4162-8651-998a3b4193862022
Heat stress: The positive effects of selenium
Dairy Global, July 2020Heat stress has a dramatic impact on feed consumption and milk production in dairy cows. It is responsible for large economic losses in the livestock industry.11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2020
L-selenomethionine: A powerful antioxidant for commercial fish culture
Aquafeed, July 2020Trials with tilapia in Thailand showed increased performance and high protection against pathogenic pressure11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2020
Beta-1,3/1,6-glucans Balance Immunity using Nutrition
Pet Food Supplement, July 2020An activated immune system is extremely effective, enhancing resistance to infections by viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. A natural carbohydrate structure from bakery yeast, the beta-1,3/1,6-glucan, is recognised by immune cells as a non-self or foreign molecule and can initiate a particular immune response.c56ce7dc-9920-415d-bdcc-89d154382b9d2020
L-selenomethionine for dairy cattle: A major driver of immune and antioxidant defence
Dairy Mail, June 2020The trace mineral selenium is involved in both antioxidant activity and the immune system. Selenium-deficient animals have been shown to have lowered immunity and resistance to disease.11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2020
L-selenomethionine: A powerful antioxidant for use in commercial fish culture
African Agri Magzine, March 2020Trials with tilapia in Thailand showed increased performance and high protection against pathogenic pressure11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2020
L-Selenomethionine for beef cattle: a major driver of immunity and meat quality
Read Meat South Africa, March 2020Excential Selenium 4000 is a high-quality, trace mineral source of selenium that provides your animals with essential selenium in the optimal way.11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2020
Stress bei Schweinen
FeedMagazine/Kraftfutter, August 2019In intensive pig production daily weight gain and feed efficiency are high. However high performance is associated with enhanced levels of oxidative stress.11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2019
Stress in swine
Kraftfutter / FeedMagazine, August 2019In intensive pig production daily weight gain and feed efficiency are high. However high performance is associated with enhanced levels of oxidative stress.11174f0e-2503-4011-83f9-3d4c7ff91e3d2019
Beta-glucans enhance the protection of puppies
Pet Food Supplement, August 2019The first months of life are critical for puppies, due to their fast body development and to the influence of their early experiences on their personality throughout their lives. Moreover, during this early age, puppies are more susceptible to infections that may cause severe disease if not immediately treated.c56ce7dc-9920-415d-bdcc-89d154382b9d2019
Insulin resistance in obese dogs
Pet Food Supplement, January 2018Throughout the last decades, obesity has been becoming the main nutritional health issue not only in humans, but also in companion animals. Over the past years, some studies have reported values between 20-40% of obesity in the studied population (McGreevy et al., 2005 Gossellin et al., 2007).c56ce7dc-9920-415d-bdcc-89d154382b9d2018