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Association between endotoxin levels in dust from indoor swine housing environments and the immune responses of pigs
Katharine Roque1, KyungMin Shin1, JiHoon Jo1, GyeongDong Lim1, EunSeob Song1, SoJung Shin1, Ravi Gautam1, JaeHee Lee1, YeonGyeong Kim1, AhRang Cho1, ChangYul Kim1, HyunJi Kim1, MyungSook Lee2, Hyeong-Geu Oh2, Byung-Chul Lee2, JungHee Kim3, Kwang-Ho Kim3, HyunKyu Jeong3, HyoungAh Kim4,*, Yong Heo1,*
1Department of Occupational Health, College of Bio-Medical Sciences, Daegu Catholic University, Gyeongsan-si, Republic of Korea
2Technology Services Division, National Institute of Animal Science, Wanjugun, Republic of Korea
3Dodram Pig Farmer’s Cooperative, Veterinary Service Center, Daejeon, Republic of Korea
4Department of Preventive Medicine, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea
Correspondence to: Tel: +82-53-850-3737; Fax: +82-53-850-3736; E-mail: yheo@cu.ac.kr (Y Heo), kimha@catholic.ac.kr (HA Kim)
Received: November 6, 2017; Revised: January 8, 2018; Accepted: January 23, 2018; Published online: January 25, 2018.
Abstract
The indoor environment in animal husbandry is inevitably contaminated with endotoxin. Endotoxin exposure associates with various inflammatory illnesses in animals. The present cross-sectional study evaluated the relationship between the degree of endotoxin exposure and the cellular and humoral immune profiles of fattening pigs. Blood samples were taken from the jugular vein of 47 pigs from ten different pig farms in Korea. Whole blood cell counts and plasma immunoglobulin classes were measured. The peripheral blood mononuclear cells were stimulated in vitro with Concanavalin A for 48 hours and the cytokines released into the culture supernatants were measured. The barns in which the pigs lived were assessed for endotoxin levels in the total or respirable dust by using the Limulus Amebocyte Lysate Kinetic QCL method. Low and high endotoxin exposure were defined as ≤30 and >30 EU/m3, respectively. Compared to pigs with low endotoxin exposure (n=19), highly exposed pigs (n=28) had higher circulating neutrophil and lymphocyte (particularly B cells) counts, IgG and IgE levels, IFNγ and IL-4 production, and lower IgA levels and TNFα production. The IL-4, IFNγ, and TNFα levels significantly correlated with endotoxin levels and/or pig age. Pigs constantly exposed to high levels of airborne endotoxin could lead to aberrant immune profiles.
Keywords: Pig; Organic dust; Endotoxin; Cellular immunity


© 2018 The Korean Society of Veterinary Science.