Title

The effect of dietary betaine in Eimeria acervulina-infected chicks

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2000

Abstract

Two experiments were conducted to evaluate the effect of dietary betaine in broiler chicks with either chronic (CHR; 2.5 x 105 sporulated oocysts on Day 1,4,7, and 10) or acute (ACT; 1.0 x 106 sporulated oocysts on Day 1) Eimeria acervulina infections. Three hundred (Experiment 1) or 600 (Experiment 2), 4-d-old male chicks were used in the 14-d experiments. In both experiments, a 2 x 3 factorial arrangement of treatments was used: two levels of betaine (0 or 0.075%) and three levels of coccidiosis infection (uninfected, CHR, or ACT). Each treatment was replicated five (Experiment 1) or 10 (Experiment 2) times with 10 chicks per replicate. In Experiment 1, the ACT infection decreased (P < 0.01) average daily gain and gain:feed, and the CHR infection decreased (P < 0.02) average daily gain. The ACT and CHR infections decreased (P < 0.06) Day 7 plasma carotenoids and Day 14 plasma total protein, and the ACT infection also decreased (P < 0.06) Day 7 plasma total protein. Average daily gain and Day 7 plasma total protein were increased in CHR chicks fed betaine but were decreased in uninfected chicks fed betaine (CHR x betaine; P < 0.09). Chicks fed betaine had decreased (P < 0.06) Day 7 plasma carotenoids. In Experiment 2 the CHR and ACT infections decreased (P < 0.01) average daily gain, average daily feed intake, grain:feed ratio, Days 7 and 14 plasma carotenoids, and Day 7 plasma total protein. Chicks fed betaine had increased (P < 0.07) average daily gains, gain:feed ratios, and lesion scores. Day 14 plasma carotenoids and plasma total protein were decreased in uninfected chicks fed betaine but were increased in CHR chicks fed betaine (CHR x betaine; P < 0.04); plasma carotenoids also were increased in ACT chicks fed betaine (ACT x betaine; P < 0.05). Betaine did not consistently affect growth performance, plasma constituents, or lesion score in CHR or ACT coccidiosis-infected chicks.

Publication Source (Journal or Book title)

Poultry Science

First Page

60

Last Page

65

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