Role of probiotics on: growth performance, gut mucosal immunity and cephalosporin resistant bacteria population in rabbits


Use of antibiotic growth promoters to enhance growth and prevent enteric infection is widespread practice among animal producers in developing countries including Kenya. Unfortunately, the practice has been associated with a significant rise in the survival of bacterial species or strains that are resistant to antibiotics.

Probiotics (a live microbial feed supplement, which beneficially affects the host animal by improving its intestinal microbial balance) supplies susceptible bacteria that can enhance host growth performance. In this regard, probiotics supplementation has been suggested as a safer and acceptable alternative to antibiotic usage even though their mechanism of actions is still not very clearly understood

The overall goal of the study is to determine the role of probiotics on growth performance, gut mucosal immunity and enteric bacterial stability of rabbits during the post weaning periods.  The study will further evaluate the effects of probiotic feeding on the diversity of total gut bacterial community and the genes responsible for third-generation cephalosporins resistance in the gut. 


National Research Fund (NRF -Kenya)

Principle Instigator
Dr. Paul O. Okumu