Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1953 Page: 17
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LIVESTOCK PRODUCTION AFFECTED BY ANIMAL DISEASES 17
showed by a simple slide agglutination test that there are serumantibodies
in common for eight pleuropneumonia-like agents. With
this standard method, an early diagnosis of the condition may be made,
making it possible to institute specific treatment and thus save many
Antibiotics and sulfonamides were tested at the South Dakota station
for their effectiveness in controlling fowl cholera. When antibiotics
were included in rations at growth-promoting levels, chicks
were susceptible to fowl cholera on exposure with cultures of the
causative organism. When given at therapeutic levels in the ration,
terramycin afforded complete protection but penicillin and streptomycin
did not significantly lower mortality. Under the same conditions,
no losses occurred in groups of chicks which received
sulfaquinoxaline and sulfamerazine in the ration.
General disease resistance
Diseases on which genetic information has been obtained are: Infectious
coryza (Hemophilus gallinarum) by California, pullorum
by Illinois, and fowl typhoid by Iowa. Many stations, however, are
breeding for general disease resistance along with other desirable
economic factors. The Alabama station's Auburn strain of White
Leghorn (strain A) continues to show low adult mortality. Another
Leghorn strain, known as strain D, is being selected for disease resistance.
Crosses of strain D males and strain A females produced offspring
that were superior to either of the parent strains in adult
livability as well as in egg production and other traits.
At the Oregon station, selection on the basis of henhouse egg production
to February 1, led to a significant decrease in mortality from
all causes through five generations in the experimental flock. This
decrease is marked, not only up to February 1, but also for the whole
laying year. It indicates that livability on a family basis during
the early part of the year bears close relation to livability during
the whole laying year.
Results of research at the Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, and New York
(Cornell) stations have shown that death in chickens is sometimes
caused by a specific lethal gene. In 1950 the Illinois station reported
a sex-linked recessive gene called "Shaker" that is responsible for a
peculiar nervous disorder manifested by rapid movements of the head
and neck and a progressively increasing difficulty in walking without
stumbling. At the same time, Indiana station's work revealed a similar
nervous disorder designated "Jittery," so lethal that only about
1 percent of the females reached maturity. The Kansas station,
through the mating of an early-feathering crossbred male, heterozygous
(impure) for Shaker, to late-feathering Rhode Island Red and
Black Australorp pullets has brought out some linkage relationships
of the gene for this lethal condition. The apparent lack of linkage
of the genes for barring and silver with that for Jittery, as found
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United States. Office of Experiment Stations. Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1953, book, 1953; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5989/m1/19/: accessed June 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.