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Dietary protease can alleviate negative effects of a coccidiosis infection on production performance in broiler chickens

  • Peek, H.W.
  • van der Klis, J.D.
  • Vermeulen, B.
  • Landman, W.J.M.
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2009
Wageningen University and Researchcenter Publications
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Two experiments were conducted to determine the effect of dietary protease on coccidiosis infection, production performance, the intestinal mucus layer thickness, and brush border enzyme activity using broilers challenged with Eimeria spp. laboratory isolates (Eimeria acervulina, E. maxima and E. tenella). In the first study the protease was Supplied at a concentration of 2.5 x 10(4) amylase-DU per kg feed. Broiler chickens were housed in cages and were infected at 10 days of age with 10(4.0) E. acervulina, 10(3.8) E. maxima or 10(3.3) E. tenella sporulated oocysts. Coccidial lesion scores, oocysts shedding, sporulation assessment and daily weight gain were used as parameters to quantify the effect of the protease. In the second study the effects of the protease (supplied at a concentration of 2.5 x 10(4) amylase-DU per kg feed) on the thickness of the mucus adherent layer and sucrase-isomaltase activity (SIA) of three regions (duodenum, jejunum and caecum) of the intestinal tract were determined. In experiment 1, no significant interaction between dietary enzyme supplementation and single Eimeria spp. challenge was observed on body weight gain. However, protease addition to the diet resulted in a significant (P=0.046) higher weight gain after comparing all supplemented and non-supplemented groups. E. maxima infected chickens showed a significant lower body weight gain in comparison with the other Eimeria infected groups. Coccidial lesions were not significantly affected by the dietary protease supplementation

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