Effect of diets containing potato protein or soya bean meal on the incidence of spontaneously-occurring subclinical necrotic enteritis and the physiological response in broiler chickens.
Br Poult Sci. 2011 Feb ;52(1):106-14. PMID: 21337205
Harper Adams University College, Newport, Shropshire, TF10 8NB, UK.
1. An experiment was conducted to compare and explain the incidence of spontaneously occurring subclinical necrotic enteritis in broiler chickens that were fed on two practical broiler diets that differed in the major protein concentrates (soya bean meal or potato protein concentrates) and examine the relationships between the severity of the disease and the growth performance and physiological responses of the chickens. 2. A total of 840, 20-d-old birds were randomly allocated to 12 pens. Two maize-based nutritionally complete diets that either contained some potato protein or soya bean meal as the major protein supplement were fed for 16 d. Twelve birds were randomly sampled from each pen at the end of the feeding period and their blood sampled and intestinal tracts and livers dissected. 3. The birds fed on the potato protein diet had a significantly 7·7% lower feed intake and a significantly 7·8% lower growth rate compared with the birds fed on the soya-based diet. There were no significant differences in feed conversion efficiency or mortality. There were no differences in the determined apparent metabolisable energy concentrations, however,the apparent dry matter digestibility of the potato protein diet was significantly higher than that of the soya based diet and the apparent crude protein digestibility of the potato protein diet was significantly lower. 4. A significantly higher alpha toxin antibody titre was found in the birds fedon the potato protein diet compared with those fed on the soya protein diet. There was a significantly increased incidence of hepatic lesions in the birds fed on the potato protein diet compared with the birds fed on the soya diet. The mean incidence of intestinal necroses tended to be greater in the birds fed on the potato protein diet (23·6%) compared with the birds fed on the soya-based diet (15·3%). 5. There was a significant linear relationship between ileal digesta sialic acid concentration and serum alpha toxin antibodies, although there were a considerable number of outliers to thisrelationship. Measurement of sialic acid concentration may be a useful variable to indicate the severity of necrotic enteritis in broiler flocks.