Rapid growth predisposes broilers to necrotic enteritis
Dierick, E., Hirvonen, O. P., Haesebrouck, F., Ducatelle, R., Van Immerseel, F., & Goossens, E. (2019). Rapid growth predisposes broilers to necrotic enteritis. Avian Pathology, 48(5), 416-422. https://doi.org/10.1080/03079457.2019.1614147
Published inAvian Pathology
© 2019 Houghton Trust Ltd.
Over the past 50 years, intentional genetic selection within the broiler industry has led to major improvements in both body weight gain (BWG) and feed conversion efficiency. Next to its economic advantages, enhancing BWG can increase the risk of metabolic and skeletal disorders. The aim of this study was to examine whether higher BWG is a predisposing factor for broiler necrotic enteritis. In this study, 300 broilers were challenged with Clostridium perfringens using a well-established, previously described challenge model. It was found that birds with higher body weight (BW) and BWG before challenge were predisposed to develop more severe necrotic enteritis lesions. After challenge, the average BWG of the birds developing mild to severe lesions dropped significantly, negatively affecting bird welfare and performance. These results show a significant interplay between BWG and the development of necrotic enteritis lesions. This raises the question whether there is a limit to broiler performance with respect to maintaining intestinal health, and whether decreasing BWG (at certain stages of the growth cycle) can be part of a plan to prevent intestinal pathology. ...
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Publication in research information system
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Additional information about fundingThis work was supported by the FWO-Vlaanderen (Fonds wetenschappelijk onderzoek, Strategisch Basisonderzoek) under grant number [1S25818N].
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