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See detailManipulating tissue metabolism by amino acids
Tesseraud, S.; Everaert, Nadia ULg; Boussaid-Om Ezzine, S. et al

in World's Poultry Science Journal (2011), 67(2), 243-251

Protein metabolism is considered to be regulated by amino acids, with major consequences on tissue development. There is evidence that lysine greatly affects carcass composition and muscle growth. In ... [more ▼]

Protein metabolism is considered to be regulated by amino acids, with major consequences on tissue development. There is evidence that lysine greatly affects carcass composition and muscle growth. In particular, a drastic effect of dietary provision of lysine has been observed on breast muscle development in chickens. Other essential amino acids, such as threonine and valine, do not have as pronounced an effect as lysine on body composition. Increasing lysine can also improve chicken breast muscle quality by increasing its ultimate pH and water holding capacity, but the underlying mechanisms are still unknown. Studies conducted over the last ten years indicate that, in addition to being substrates for protein synthesis, amino acids act as modulators of signal transduction pathways that control metabolism and cell functions. For instance, certain amino acids can modulate the activity of the intracellular protein kinases involved in the control of mRNA translation. Interestingly, enhanced responses to amino acids have been reported during the neonatal period, suggesting that early protein nutrition impacts on the development of broiler chicks. Methionine and cysteine have a very significant place among amino acids because they have several additional roles: they are precursors of essential molecules, for example cysteine is used for the synthesis of the antioxidant glutathione, and thus participates in the control of oxidative status, methionine is a source of the methyl groups needed for all biological methylation reactions, including methylation of DNA and histones, etc. These findings together indicate the importance of optimizing amino acid nutrition and providing a rationale for nutritional advice. © Copyright World's Poultry Science Association 2011. [less ▲]

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See detailDelay in feed access and spread of hatch: Importance of early nutrition
Willemsen, H.; Debonne, M.; Swennen, Q. et al

in World's Poultry Science Journal (2010), 66(2), 177-188

In a commercial hatchery, chicks (or poults) hatch over a 24-48 hour period. All chicks remain in the incubator until the majority of the chicks have emerged from the shell. Once removed from the ... [more ▼]

In a commercial hatchery, chicks (or poults) hatch over a 24-48 hour period. All chicks remain in the incubator until the majority of the chicks have emerged from the shell. Once removed from the incubator, the newly hatched chick has to undergo several hatchery treatments and is then transported before being placed on the broiler farm. This means that, under practical conditions, chicks are deprived of feed and water for up to 72 hours. In addition, the time of hatch within the hatching window and the spread of hatch cause variability in the amount of time that chicks are feed deprived. Literature on feed deprivation after hatch clearly demonstrates the detrimental effects of any delay in feed access on performance of the chicks with respect to growth, immune system activation, digestive enzyme stimulation and organ development. Improved management strategies, such as shortening the hatching window or the time to first feeding by specific management measures, provide an alternative in dealing with the negative effects caused by a delay in feed access. The development of pre-starter diets that better meet the needs of the newly hatched chicks or in ovo feeding to bridge the gap between hatch and first feeding provide other alternatives in overcoming these problems. However, speculation remains regarding the importance of in ovo or early feeding, or whether the in ovo or early feeding itself is responsible for the beneficial effects reported. The aim of the following review is to discuss the current status of research into early feeding and to stimulate future and further research regarding these topics. © World's Poultry Science Association 2010. [less ▲]

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See detailGas exchange during storage and incubation of Avian eggs: Effects on embryogenesis, hatchability, chick quality and post-hatch growth
Onagbesan, O.; Bruggeman, V.; Smit, L. D. et al

in World's Poultry Science Journal (2007), 63(4), 557-573

Embryonic development is a dynamic process that requires a fine balance between several factors in order to achieve an optimum hatchability and chick quality. These factors include the background of the ... [more ▼]

Embryonic development is a dynamic process that requires a fine balance between several factors in order to achieve an optimum hatchability and chick quality. These factors include the background of the embryo, such as genetic line of the breeders, the age of the breeder, egg weight, and factors related to the environment in which the egg is stored and incubated, such as temperature, humidity, gas levels and altitude. Gas exchanges are of fundamental importance for embryonic development during incubation and may affect the livability of the embryo. This paper reviews the roles of the gaseous environment (i.e. O 2 and CO2) around hatching eggs during storage and during incubation and the effect it might have on the survival of the developing embryos and the chicks that hatch. The state of the art on the different attempts to establish the optimum requirements of different gases that promote the optimal developmental trajectories at different periods during incubation is presented. The roles and consequences of different levels of O2 and CO2 during storage and incubation on hatchability, incubation duration, hatching process, embryo growth, embryo mortality, organ development and morphology, metabolism, blood acid-base balance, chick quality and chick post-hatch growth are reviewed. © 2007 World's Poultry Science Association. [less ▲]

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See detailPrevalence and sources of Campylobacter spp. contamination in free-range broiler production in Belgium
Vandeplas, Sabrina ULg; Dubois Dauphin, Robin ULg; Beckers, Yves ULg et al

in World's Poultry Science Journal (2006), 62(supplément), 557

An one year epidemiological study was carried out between February 2005 and January 2006 in Belgium to assess the Campylobacter prevalence in free-range broiler production. Three successive broiler flocks ... [more ▼]

An one year epidemiological study was carried out between February 2005 and January 2006 in Belgium to assess the Campylobacter prevalence in free-range broiler production. Three successive broiler flocks on 6 belgian farms were investigated for the presence of Campylobacter ssp. during the rearing period. Each flock was visited four times, before and after the outdoor rearing period. During each visit, samples were taken in the broiler houses (litter, cecal droppings, water-lines, feed, entrance premises) as well as from the outer rearing environment (open-air range). Conventional microbiological methods combined with biochemical tests were used for the Campylobacter detection, species identification and isolation. Campylobacter prevalence was very high in free-range broiler production during the experimental period. C. jejuni is the main species isolated from all contaminated samples, while mixed C. jejuni/C. coli infections sometimes occured. Contamination of the broiler flocks was increased in summer/autumn, with a 100% flocks contamination, whereas only 4 (66.7%) and 3 (50%) of the flocks became Campylobacter positive in spring and winter respectively, at the end of the rearing period. Moreover, about 53.8% of contaminated flocks were infected with Campylobacter before chicks have access to the open-air range. In 69.2% of the Campylobacter-positive flocks, the open-air range soil belonged partly of fully to environmental samples found to be Campylobacter-positive before flock infection. The other potential sources of infection were delivery tray, entrance premises floor and water-lines. The access to an open-air range seems to be an important way of contamination of broilers because Campylobacter prevalence in the flocks increased after going out. [less ▲]

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