Dr Rodrigo Guabiraba - Precision cut lung slices: a novel versatile tool to examine host–pathogen interactions in the chicken lung
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The avianrespiratory tract is a common entry route for many pathogens and an importantdelivery route for vaccination in the poultry industry. Immune responses in theavian lung have mostly been studied invivo due to the lack of robust, relevant in vitro and ex vivomodels mimicking the mucosal microenvironment. Various principles of microbialinfection including pathogen tropism, replication, spread, and innateantimicrobial host responses can readily be studied in suitable cell or tissueculture models. Precision-cut lung slices (PCLS) have the major advantages ofmaintaining the 3-dimensional architecture of the lung and includesheterogeneous cell populations. PCLS have been obtained from a number ofmammalian species and from chicken embryos. However, as the embryonic lung isphysiologically undifferentiated and immunologically immature, it is lesssuitable to examine complex host-pathogen interactions including antimicrobialresponses. Together with our partners from the Roslin Institute (Edinburgh,UK), we have recently established the first protocols for preparing andculturing PCLS from immunological mature chickens (chPCLS) and for assessingavian influenza infection and the innate immune response. Further analyses will be focused on revealingvirulence-associated infection and/or host response patterns in chPCLS, whichmay help to improve our understanding of avian influenza pathogenesis and/oravian influenza virus pathotype evolution in gallinaceous poultry.
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