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      Proteome changes in the small intestinal mucosa of broilers (Gallus gallus) induced by high concentrations of atmospheric ammonia

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          Ammonia is a well-known toxicant both existing in atmospheric and aquatic system. So far, most studies of ammonia toxicity focused on mammals or aquatic animals. With the development of poultry industry, ammonia as a main source of contaminant in the air is causing more and more problems on broiler production, especially lower growth rate. The molecular mechanisms that underlie the negative effects of ammonia on the growth and intestine of broilers are yet unclear. We investigated the growth, gut morphology, and mucosal proteome of Arbor Acres broilers ( Gallus gallus) exposed to high concentrations of atmospheric ammonia by performing a proteomics approach integrated with traditional methods.


          Exposure to ammonia interfered with the development of immune organ and gut villi. Meanwhile, it greatly reduced daily weight gain and feed intake, and enhanced feed conversion ratio. A total of 43 intestinal mucosal proteins were found to be differentially abundant. Up-regulated proteins are related to oxidative phosphorylation and apoptosis. Down-regulated proteins are related to cell structure and growth, transcriptional and translational regulation, immune response, oxidative stress and nutrient metabolism. These results indicated that exposure to ammonia triggered oxidative stress, and interfered with nutrient absorption and immune function in the small intestinal mucosa of broilers.


          These findings have important implications for understanding the toxic mechanisms of ammonia on intestine of broilers, which provides new information that can be used for intervention using nutritional strategies in the future.

          Electronic supplementary material

          The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12953-015-0067-4) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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          Most cited references 71

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          Unified, structured vocabularies and classifications freely provided by the Gene Ontology (GO) Consortium are widely accepted in most of the large scale gene annotation projects. Consequently, many tools have been created for use with the GO ontologies. WEGO (Web Gene Ontology Annotation Plot) is a simple but useful tool for visualizing, comparing and plotting GO annotation results. Different from other commercial software for creating chart, WEGO is designed to deal with the directed acyclic graph structure of GO to facilitate histogram creation of GO annotation results. WEGO has been used widely in many important biological research projects, such as the rice genome project and the silkworm genome project. It has become one of the daily tools for downstream gene annotation analysis, especially when performing comparative genomics tasks. WEGO, along with the two other tools, namely External to GO Query and GO Archive Query, are freely available for all users at . There are two available mirror sites at and . Any suggestions are welcome at
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            Global, in vivo, and site-specific phosphorylation dynamics in signaling networks.

            Cell signaling mechanisms often transmit information via posttranslational protein modifications, most importantly reversible protein phosphorylation. Here we develop and apply a general mass spectrometric technology for identification and quantitation of phosphorylation sites as a function of stimulus, time, and subcellular location. We have detected 6,600 phosphorylation sites on 2,244 proteins and have determined their temporal dynamics after stimulating HeLa cells with epidermal growth factor (EGF) and recorded them in the Phosida database. Fourteen percent of phosphorylation sites are modulated at least 2-fold by EGF, and these were classified by their temporal profiles. Surprisingly, a majority of proteins contain multiple phosphorylation sites showing different kinetics, suggesting that they serve as platforms for integrating signals. In addition to protein kinase cascades, the targets of reversible phosphorylation include ubiquitin ligases, guanine nucleotide exchange factors, and at least 46 different transcriptional regulators. The dynamic phosphoproteome provides a missing link in a global, integrative view of cellular regulation.
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              Filamins as integrators of cell mechanics and signalling.

              Filamins are large actin-binding proteins that stabilize delicate three-dimensional actin webs and link them to cellular membranes. They integrate cellular architectural and signalling functions and are essential for fetal development and cell locomotion. Here, we describe the history, structure and function of this group of proteins.

                Author and article information

                State Key Laboratory of Animal Nutrition, Institute of Animal Sciences, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing, 100193 People’s Republic of China
                Proteome Sci
                Proteome Sci
                Proteome Science
                BioMed Central (London )
                21 February 2015
                21 February 2015
                : 13
                © Zhang et al.; licensee BioMed Central. 2015

                This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.

                Research Article
                Custom metadata
                © The Author(s) 2015

                Molecular biology

                broilers, proteome, small intestinal mucosa, ammonia


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