Almost every nutrient as well as undesirable substances in feed (e.g. mycotoxins) and secondary plant metabolites, may influence the immune system. On the other hand, immunomodulatory feed components may influence the host animal's immune responses against viral, bacterial, mycotic and parasitic pathogens. Therefore, the manifold interactions between nutrition and the immune system are subject of research in the interdisciplinary working group. Specific aspects are investigated across different livestock species.
The effects of substances of interest (SOI) are investigated on primary cells in vitro or tested in feeding experiments, whereby the influence on immune responses are determined ex vivo or in vivo.