Immunisation of chickens with live Salmonella vaccines – Role of booster vaccination
It is accepted that booster vaccinations of chickens with live Salmonella vaccines are essential part of vaccinations schemes to induce an effective adaptive immune response. As manufacturer of registered live Salmonella vaccines recommend different times of booster the question raises whether the duration between the first and second immunisation might influence the protective effect against Salmonella exposure. Chickens were immunised with a live Salmonella Enteritidis vaccine on day 1 of age followed by a booster vaccination at different intervals (day 28, 35 or 42 of age) to study the effects on the colonisation and invasion of the Salmonella vaccine strain, the humoral immune response and the efficacy against infection with Salmonella Enteritidis on day 56 of age. Immunisation of all groups resulted in a very effective adaptive immune response and a high degree of protection against severe Salmonella exposure, however, the time of booster had only an unverifiable influence on either the colonisation of the vaccine strain, the development of the humoral immune response or the colonisation of the Salmonella challenge strain. Therefore, the first oral immunisation of the chicks on day 1 of age seems to be of special importance and prerequisite for the development of the effective immune response. A booster immunisation should be carried out, however, the time of booster may vary between week 3 and week 7 of age of the chickens without adversely impact on the efficacy of the adaptive immune response or the protective effects.