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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Title: An Examination of the Role of Feeding Regimens in Regulating Metabolism During the Broiler Breeder Grower Period

item Rosebrough, Robert
item Russell, Beverly
item Poch, Stephen
item Richards, Mark

Submitted to: Poultry Science
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: April 30, 2006
Publication Date: July 15, 2006
Citation: DeBeer, M., Coon, C.N., Rosebrough, R.W., Russell, B.A., Poch, S.M., Richards, M.P. 2006. An examination of the role of feeding regimens in regulating metabolism during the broiler breeder grower period [abstract]. Poultry Science 85 (Suppl.) A:56.

Technical Abstract: Skip-a-day feeding programs are commonly used in broiler breeder rearing to reduce flock variation. A trial was conducted to determine the effects of skip-a-day feeding programs on various metabolic parameters. A total of 120, 16-week old Cobb-Vantress broiler breeder pullets were used, of which, 48 had been fed using an everyday restriction program from four weeks of age, and 72 had been fed using a skip-a-day restriction program from four weeks of age. All pullets were fed to reach the same body weight at 16 weeks of age. At 112 d 48 pullets from the everyday group were fed 74 g of standard breeder grower diet and 72 pullets from the skip-a-day group were fed 148 g of the same feed. Livers from four sacrificed pullets were collected at 0, 12, and 24 (everyday) and 0, 12, 24, 36 and 48 (skip-a-day) hours after feeding. These times represented one full feeding cycle for each group. RNA was isolated from livers using Trizol ® reagent and quantitatively measured by noting the OD 260/280 ratio and qualitatively by gel electrophoresis. The expressions of certain regulatory genes in metabolism (acetyl CoA carboxylase, ACC; fatty acid synthase, FAS; malic enzyme, ME; isocitrate dehydrogenase, ICD and aspartate aminotransferase, AAT) were determined by real time PCR. ACC, FAS and ME were increased in skip-a-day birds compared to those birds fed daily. In contrast, skip-a-day decreased ICD and AAT gene expression, paralleling findings noted in fasting-refeeding experiments conducted with much younger birds. Feeding regimens practiced during the grower period may predispose the broiler breeder hen to high rates of lipogenesis during the subsequent reproductive cycle.

Last Modified: 4/19/2015
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