The objective of this in vivo experiment was to evaluate the influence of arabinoxylooligosaccharides (AXOS) on shedding and colonization of Salmonella Enteritidis in broilers. Arabinoxylooligosaccharides, which are oligosaccharides derived from arabinoxylans by partial hydrolysis, have a beneficial effect on feed conversion ratios when added to broiler diets. Additionally, AXOS have been shown to promote the growth of bifidobacteria in the ceco-colonic compartment of the gastrointestinal tract. To investigate the impact of AXOS on colonization of broilers with Salmonella, 224 one-day-old chicks were divided into 4 groups and given either unsupplemented feed or feed supplemented with 0.2% AXOS-3-0.25, 0.2% AXOS-90.25, or 0.4% AXOS-9-0.25 throughout the experiment. The AXOS-3-0.25 and AXOS-9-0.25 both have an arabinose-to-xylose ratio of 0.25 and have an average degree of polymerization of 3 and 9, respectively. At 14 d posthatch, each animal was orally inoculated with 2.5 x 10(9) cfu of Salmonella Enteritidis. Cloacal swabs, taken at regular times, showed a significant reduction of Salmonella presence in the group given 0.4% AXOS9- 0.25 compared with the control group. This reduction was observed in the 1-to 11-d postinfection period. Colonization of the ceca as well as the translocation of Salmonella to the spleen was significantly reduced at 3 and 7 d postinfection in the 0.4% AXOS-9-0.25 group. A similar, although more moderate, decrease in colonization was observed in the group given 0.2% AXOS-90.25. It was concluded that dietary addition of AXOS provides dose-dependent protection against oral infections with Salmonella Enteritidis in poultry.