2018 - 2023

Assessment of impact of Canadian infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) variants on egg production and fertility of chickens

Principal Investigator: Mohamed Faizal Abdul Careem, University of Calgary
Status: In progress


This project proposes to quantify the impact of IBV variants on egg production and propose mitigation strategies for the variants that impact layer flocks in Canada.  Specific objectives of this project are as follows:
  1. Isolate major variant infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) strains originating from broiler and layer flocks in Canada.
  2. Determine whether the isolated Canadian variant IBV strains cause abnormalities in the reproductive tracts of young and adult chickens leading to lower egg production and fertility problems.
  3. Estimate the economic impact of IBV on the Canadian poultry industry.
  4. Formulate disease mitigation strategies suggesting potential vaccine candidate strains with a view of minimizing the impact of variant IBV on egg production and fertility.


The proposed project will determine the impact of variant IBV strains identified from chickens in Canada on the reproductive health (egg production and quality) of chickens. Understanding what strains are causing these egg production and egg quality problems is important in choosing an effective vaccine that will prevent reproductive abnormalities. Additionally, the economic impact of IBV on the Canadian poultry will be studied. Understanding better the extent of economic losses in the poultry industry in Canada will inform the development of timely and cost-effective disease control and prevention recommendations. This project will significantly contribute to our knowledge of the impact of Canadian IBV isolates on the reproductive performance of chickens.


$435,905 (AAFC/CPRC $255,970*, EFC $75,000, Poultry Health Services $104,935 (in-kind))

*This research is part of the 2018-2023 Poultry Science Cluster which is supported by AAFC as part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.

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