Department of Poultry Farming and Pathology, National Veterinary Medicine School, University of Manouba, 2020 Sidi Thabet, Tunisia
Immunosuppression is characterized by a dysfunction of humoral and/or cellular immune response leading to increase of susceptibility to secondary infections, increase of mortality and morbidity, poor productivity and welfare and vaccination failures. Humoral immune response depression is due to perturbation of soluble factors, as complement and chemokines in innate immunity and antibodies or cytokines in adaptive immunity. At the cellular immune response, immunosuppression is the consequence of the dysfunction of T-cells, B-cells, heterophils, monocytes, macrophages and natural Killer cells. Immunosuppression in turkeys can be caused by numerous, non-infectious and infectious agents, having variable pathological and molecular mechanisms. Interactions between them are very complex. This paper reviews the common viruses inducing clinical and sub-clinical immunosuppression in turkeys, and enteric and neoplastic viruses in particular, as well as the interactions among them. Evaluation of immunosuppression is currently based on classical approach, however new technique such as the microarray technology is being developed to investigate immunological mediator’s genes detection. Controlling of immunosuppression include, in general, biosecurity practices, maintaining appropriate breeding conditions and vaccination of breeders and their progeny. Nevertheless, few vaccines are available against immunosuppressive viruses in turkey’s industry. The development of new control strategies is reviewed.
Keywords: Cellular immunity, Humoral immunity, Immunosuppression, Lymphocyte, Turkey.