Role of compensatory gain in Eimeria acervulina-induced liver copper accumulation in chicks

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An investigation was conducted to determine whether the Eimeria acervulina-induced increase in liver Cu accumulation in chicks is the result of compensatory gain that accompanies the recovery phase of infection. In experiment 1, chicks inoculated one time with 1 x 106 sporulated E. acervulina oocysts had a faster rate of compensatory gain than chicks inoculated serially on three occasions with 4 x 105 oocysts. However, liver Cu accumulation was nearly identical for the two infection regimes. In experiment 2, rate of compensatory gain and liver Cu accumulation was compared in 1) ad libitum-fed chicks; 2) restricted-fed chicks fed 40% of ad libitum intake followed by ad libitum intake; 3) coccidiosis-infected chicks, 1 x 106 oocysts on d 2 of the experiment; and 4)-6) the same as 1)-3), respectively, but fed 500 mg Cu/kg diet. Restricted-fed chicks had a higher rate of compensatory gain than coccidiosis-infected chicks. Liver Cu accumulation was sixfold higher in coccidiosis-infected chicks than in restricted-fed chicks, however. In addition, liver Cu accumulation of the control (uninfected) chicks and the 40% restricted-fed chicks was identical. Thus compensatory gain during the recovery phase of coccidiosis is not responsible for the coccidiosis-induced increase in liver Cu accumulation.

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Journal of Nutrition

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