1Department of Veterinary Preventive Medicine, Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH, USA.
Numerous vaccination strategies have been evaluated to develop effective vaccines against Campylobacter jejuni colonization in poultry but with limited success. The following experiments were conducted to investigate the effect of biodegradable and biocompatible poly (lactide-co-glycolide) nanoparticle (NP) encapsulated outer membrane proteins (OMP) of C. jejuni. Chickens were vaccinated with different routes [subcutaneous (s/c) or oral] and doses (25, 125, or 250 µg) of candidate nanoparticle vaccine with appropriate control groups. Serum and cloacal fecal samples were taken at regular intervals of time, and the birds were euthanized 7 d postchallenge with C. jejuni. The results were interpreted based on anti-OMP immunoglobulin response in chicken and intestinal colonization of C. jejuni. The C. jejuni colonization in cecal and cloacal contents at 7 d postchallenge was below the detection limit in the s/c vaccinated groups, but the other groups demonstrated varying degrees of colonization. The serum IgA was higher in the group vaccinated s/c with OMP only compared with the rest of the groups. The serum- and fecal-IgY titers were consistently higher in the s/c vaccinated groups (with or without NP) than the rest of the groups. Elevated levels of OMP specific serum antibodies correlated with below the limit of detection levels of Campylobacter colonization in broiler chickens receiving 125 μg of OMP alone and the OMP+NP vaccine s/c. In conclusion, the s/c route of vaccination with or without NP encapsulated OMP of C. jejuni may serve as a candidate vaccine for control of C. jejuni colonization in chickens.