Effects of Non-phytate Phosphorus and 1a-Hydroxycholecalciferol on Growth Performance, Bone Mineralization, and Carcass Traits of Broiler Chickens

JC Han K Ma JG Wang GH Chen JL Zhang HX Qu YF Yan YH Cheng About the authors

ABSTRACT

This study evaluated the effects of dietary non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) and 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol (1a-OH-D3) on the growth performance, bone mineralization, and carcass traits of 1- to 21-day-old broiler chickens. On the day of hatch, 600 male Ross 308 chicks were weighed and randomly assigned to 12 treatments, with five cages of 10 birds each. A 6 × 2 factorial arrangement was applied, consisting of 0.20%, 0.25%, 0.30%, 0.35%, 0.40%, or 0.45% NPP and 0 or 5 μg/kg of 1a-OH-D3. The basal diet contained 0.52% calcium (Ca) and was not supplemented with vitamin D3. Dietary NPP levels significantly affected growth performance and tibia mineralization (except width) of broilers; by contrast, meat yield and organ relative weight were not influenced by NPP. The inclusion of 1a-OH-D3 improved growth performance, tibia mineralization, and carcass and breast yield, whereas it decreased the relative weights of the liver, heart, and kidney. A significant interaction between NPP and 1a-OH-D3 was observed for body weight gain (BWG), feed efficiency (FE), mortality, serum Ca and P levels, tibia breaking-strength, ash weight, and Ca content, as well as breast yield and heart relative weight. These results suggest that broilers fed with 5 μg of 1a-OH-D3 per kg of diet obtain optimal growth performance and tibia mineralization when dietary NPP level was 0.30% and the analyzed Ca to NPP ratio was 1.97.

Keywords:
Non-phytate phosphorus; 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol; growth; bone; broiler chicken

INTRODUCTION

Intestinal mucosa phytase activity increases and more phytate phosphorus (PP) is hydrolyzed at low dietary calcium (Ca, 0.40%) compared with high Ca (0.90%) in broiler chickens from 14 to 24 days of age (Applegate et al.,2003Applegate TJ, Angel R, Classen HL. Effect of dietary calcium, 25-hydroxycholecalciferol, or bird strain on small intestinal phytase activity in broiler chickens. Poultry Science 2003;82:1140-1148.). Broiler growth rate and tibia ash responses to supplemental phytase are the greatest at low non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) levels and high Ca levels, and these responses decrease when the Ca level decreases or when the NPP level increases (Driver et al., 2005Driver JP, Pesti GM, Bakalli RI, Edwards Jr HM. Effects of calcium and nonphytate phosphorus concentrations on phytase efficacy in broiler chicks. Poultry Science2005;84:1406-1417.). These data indicate that dietary Ca and phosphorus (P) affect the efficacy of endogenous and exogenous phytase in broiler chickens.

Vitamin D efficacy maybe also influenced by dietary Ca and P in poultry. Chickens obtained the highest growth rate, bone ash, and Ca and P retention when they were fed with diets of Ca to total phosphorus (tP) ratios ranging from 1.1 to 1.4:1 (Qian et al., 1997Qian H, Kornegay ET, Denbow DM. Utilization of phytate phosphorus and calcium as influenced by microbial phytase, cholecalciferol, and the calcium: total phosphorus ratio in broiler diets. Poultry Science1997;76:37-46.). The metabolite of vitamin D, 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol (1a-OH-D3), is 5 to 8 times as active as vitamin D3 in promoting growth and tibia ash content (Edwards et al., 2002Edwards Jr, HM. Studies on the efficacy of cholecalciferol and derivatives for stimulating phytate utilization in broilers. Poultry Science2002;81:1026-1031.; Han et al., 2013Han JC, Qu HX, Wang JQ, Yao JH, Zhang CM, Yang GL, et al. The effects of dietary cholecalciferol and 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol levels in a calcium- and phosphorus-deficient diet on growth performance and tibia quality of growing broilers. Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences 2013;22:158-164.). The compound 1a-OH-D3 had positive effects on growth and bone mineralization in broiler chickens (Biehl and Baker, 1997Biehl RR, Baker DH. Utilization of phytate and nonphytate phosphorus in chicks as affected by source and amount of vitamin D3. Journal of Animal Science1997; 75:2986-2993. ). However, the efficacy of 1a-OH-D3 negatively responded to dietary Ca levels (Han et al., 2012Han JC, Liu Y, Yao JH, Wang JQ, Qu HX, Yan YF, et al. Dietary calcium levels reduce the efficacy of one alpha-hydroxycholecalciferol in phosphorus-deficient diets of broilers. Journal of Poultry Science2012;49:34-38.). These data indicate that dietary Ca affects vitamin D bioavailability.

Han et al. (2009Han JC, Yang XD, Zhang T, Li H, Li WL, Zhang ZY, et al. Effects of 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol on growth performance, parameters of tibia and plasma, meat quality, and type IIb sodium phosphate cotransporter gene expression of one- to twenty-one-day-old broilers. Poultry Science2009c;88:323-329. c) reported that 1a-OH-D3 improved growth performance and bone mineralization of broilers fed diets with 0.21% NPP. However, 1a-OH-D3 did not significantly improve broiler growth when dietary NPP was increased to 0.29% (Han et al., 2009b). Edwards (2002)Edwards Jr, HM. Studies on the efficacy of cholecalciferol and derivatives for stimulating phytate utilization in broilers. Poultry Science2002;81:1026-1031. also found that 1a-OH-D3 did not improve body weight gain (BWG) or feed efficiency (FE) in 1- to 16-day-old broilers when the dietary NPP level reached 0.30%. These results suggest that NPP may influence the bioavailability of 1a-OH-D3.

However, the relationship between NPP and 1a-OH-D3 has not been examined. Thus, the objective of the present study was to evaluate the effects of dietary NPP and 1a-OH-D3 on the growth performance, bone mineralization, and carcass traits of broiler chickens.

MATERIAL AND METHODS

The procedures used in this study were approved by the Animal Care Committee of Shangqiu Normal University.

Birds, diets, and management

On the day of hatch, 600 male Ross 308 broiler chicks were weighed and randomly assigned to 12 treatments, and were housed in five stainless steel cages (70 × 70 × 30 cm) of 10 birds each. The chicks were transferred into stainless steel growing-finishing cages (190 × 50 × 35 cm) on day 14. A 6×2 factorial arrangement was applied to test 0.20%, 0.25%, 0.30%, 0.35%, 0.40% and 0.45% NPP combined with 0 and 5 μg/kg of 1a-OH-D3 in a basal diet (Table 1). The basal diet contained 0.52% Ca and was not supplemented with vitamin D3. The birds were given access to mash feed and water ad libitum. The lighting system consisted of 23 h of light from day 0 to 21. Room temperature was controlled at 33°C from day 0 to 3 and then gradually reduced by 3°C per week until the final temperature of 24°C was reached.

Table 1
Ingredients and nutrient composition of the experimental diets.

Crystalline 1a-OH-D3

The crystalline 1a-OH-D3 product was supplied by Taizhou Healtech Chemical Co., Ltd. (Taizhou, China). The1a-OH-D3 solution was prepared using the method of Han et al. (2012Han JC, Liu Y, Yao JH, Wang JQ, Qu HX, Yan YF, et al. Dietary calcium levels reduce the efficacy of one alpha-hydroxycholecalciferol in phosphorus-deficient diets of broilers. Journal of Poultry Science2012;49:34-38.). Briefly, 1a-OH-D3 was dissolved in ethanol and then diluted to a final concentration of 10 mg/L of 1a-OH-D3 in a solution of 5% ethanol and 95% propylene glycol.

Sample collection

The chicks were individually weighed on day 21. One chick which body weight was close to the average weight of the replicate was selected for the collection of blood and tibias. The live body weight of the chicks was determined after fasting for 12 hours. Blood samples (5 mL) were collected by cardiac puncture on day 21 and centrifuged for 10 min at 3000g at 20°C. The chicks were sacrificed after blood samples were collected. The carcass, breast (with bones), leg quarter, liver, heart, and kidney were weighed. The meat yield and organ relative weight were calculated as the percentage of the live body weight of chicks. The left and right tibias of the individual chicks were excised and frozen at -20°C for further analysis (breaking-strength, weight, length, width, ash weight, and percentage of ash, Ca and P).

Sample analysis

Serum Ca and inorganic phosphate (Pi) were determined using a Shimadzu CL-8000 analyzer (Shimadzu Corp., Kyoto, Japan) following the manufacturer's instructions.

Following the method by Hall et al. (2003Hall LE, Shirley RB, Bakalli RI, Aggrey SE, Pesti GM, Edwards Jr HM. Power of two methods for the estimation ofbone ash of broilers. Poultry Science2003;82:414-418.), the left tibias were boiled for 5 min to loosen muscle tissues. The meat, connective tissue, and the fibula bone were completely removed using scissors and forceps. The tibias were placed in a container with ethanol for 48 h (to remove water and polar lipids) after cleaning. The bones were then further extracted in anhydrous ether for 48 h (removing non-polar lipids). Tibias were dried at 105°C for 24 h before weighing. Tibia width was determined at the medial point. Tibia ash content was determined by burning the bone in a muffle furnace for 30 hour at 600°C.

The right tibia was used to analyze the breaking-strength. Tibia breaking-strength was determined using an all-digital electronic universal testing machine (Shenzhen Hengen Instrument Co. Ltd., Shenzhen, China). Tibias were cradled on two support points measuring 4 cm apart. Force was applied to the midpoint of the same face of each tibia using a 50 kg load cell with a crosshead speed of 10 mm/min (Jendral et al., 2008Jendral MJ, Korver DR, Church JS, Feddes JJR. Bonemineral density and breaking strength of white leghornshoused in conventional, modified, and commercially availablecolony battery cages. Poultry Science2008;87:828-837.).

Calcium and total P in diet and tibia were determined by the method of Han et al. (2013Han JC, Qu HX, Wang JQ, Yao JH, Zhang CM, Yang GL, et al. The effects of dietary cholecalciferol and 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol levels in a calcium- and phosphorus-deficient diet on growth performance and tibia quality of growing broilers. Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences 2013;22:158-164.). Crude protein was determined using the Kjeldahl method (PN-1430, Barcelona, Spain).

Statistical analyses

The data were analyzed by one-way and two-way ANOVA procedures of SAS (SAS Institute, 2002). Means were compared by Tukey's test when probability values were significant (p< 0.05).

RESULTS

Growth performance

Dietary NPP levels significantly affected BWG, feed intake (FI), FE, and mortality (Table 2). Vitamin D deficiency decreased BWG, FI, and FE, and caused severe mortality of broilers in groups 1 to 6. Addition of 1a-OH-D3 improved BWG, FI, and FE, and decreased mortality of birds in groups 7 to 12. No significant differences were observed in BWG, FI, FE, and mortality among groups fed 0.25% to 0.45% NPP plus 1a-OH-D3. Significant interaction between dietary NPP and 1a-OH-D3 was observed for BWG, FE, and mortality.

Table 2
Effects of non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) and 1?-hydroxycholecalciferol (1?-OH-D3) on the growth performance of 1- to 21-day-old broiler chicks

Serum minerals

Dietary NPP increased serum P when 1a-OH-D3 was not added; by contrast, it did not affect serum Ca (Table 2). The addition of 1a-OH-D3 did not affect serum Ca or P. An interaction between NPP and 1a-OH-D3 was observed for serum Ca and P levels.

Tibia mineralization

Dietary NPP levels influenced tibia breaking-strength, weight, length, ash weight and the percentage of ash, Ca, and P (Table 3). Vitamin D deficiency caused low levels of tibia mineralization of broilers in groups 1 to 6. Tibia mineralization was improved by 1a-OH-D3. No significant differences were observed in tibia parameters (except breaking-strength) among groups fed 0.30% to 0.45% NPP plus 1a-OH-D3. Significant interaction between NPP and 1a-OH-D3 was observed in tibia breaking-strength, ash weight, and Ca content.

Table 3
- Effects of non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) and 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol (1a-OH-D3) on tibia mineralization parameters of 1- to 21-day-old broiler chicks1.

Carcass traits

Dietary NPP levels did not affect meat yield or organ relative weights (Table 4). Vitamin D deficiency reduced muscle growth and meat production of broilers. Carcass and breast yields of groups 1 to 6 was significantly lower than those of groups 7 to 12 supplemented with 1a-OH-D3. The addition of 1a-OH-D3 increased carcass and breast meat yields and decreased the relative weights of the liver, heart, and kidney. However, it did not affect leg yield. A significant interaction between NPP and 1a-OH-D3 was observed for breast meat yield and heart relative weight.

Table 4
Effects of non-phytate phosphorus (NPP) and 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol (1a-OH-D3) on the carcass traits of 1- to 21-day-old broiler chicks1,2

DISCUSSION

Growth performance

Dietary NPP levels significantly affected BWG, FI, FE, and mortality of broilers fed 0.52% Ca in this study. Augspurger & Baker (2004Augspurger NR, Baker DH. High dietary phytase levels maximize phytate-phosphorus utilization but do not affect protein utilization in chicks fed phosphorus. Journal of Animal Science 2004;82:1100-1107.) reported that 0.10% to 0.30% NPP levels linearly improved the growth performance of 8- to 22-day-old broilers. Literature studies mentioned below showed that the response of broilers to P is affected by Ca levels. The BWG of 1- to 42-day-old broilers was not affected by 0.30% to 0.45% NPP when Ca level was 0.6 to 0.8%; however, the same levels of NPP increased BWG when Ca reached 0.90% (Rao et al., 2006Rao SVR, Raju MVLN, Reddy MR, Pavani P. Interaction between dietary calcium and non-phytate phosphorus levels on growth, bone mineralization and mineral excretion in commercial broilers. Animal Feed Science and Technology2006;131:133-148.). Driver et al. (2005Driver JP, Pesti GM, Bakalli RI, Edwards Jr HM. Effects of calcium and nonphytate phosphorus concentrations on phytase efficacy in broiler chicks. Poultry Science2005;84:1406-1417.) also found that the BWG of 1- to 16-day-old broilers was not affected by the NPP levels when dietary Ca level was 0.44%; however, bird BWG linearly increased as a function the NPP levels when dietary Ca level ranged from 0.85% to 1.04%. These data indicate that dietary NPP and Ca to NPP ratios affected the growth of broilers.

Vitamin D deficiency reduced BWG, FI, and FE, and caused severe mortality of broilers in groups 1 to 6. The addition of1a-OH-D3 improved the growth performance of broilers in the present study, which is in agreement with the findings of Biehl & Baker (1997Biehl RR, Baker DH. Utilization of phytate and nonphytate phosphorus in chicks as affected by source and amount of vitamin D3. Journal of Animal Science1997; 75:2986-2993. ), Edwards (2002), Snow et al. (2004Snow JL, Baker DH, Parsons CM. Phytase, citric acid, and 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol improve phytate phosphorus utilization in chicks fed a corn-soybean meal diet. Poultry Science2004; 83:1187-1192.), and Han et al. (2009Han JC, Yang XD, Zhang T, Li H, Li WL, Zhang ZY, et al. Effects of 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol on growth performance, parameters of tibia and plasma, meat quality, and type IIb sodium phosphate cotransporter gene expression of one- to twenty-one-day-old broilers. Poultry Science2009c;88:323-329. c, 2012Han JC, Liu Y, Yao JH, Wang JQ, Qu HX, Yan YF, et al. Dietary calcium levels reduce the efficacy of one alpha-hydroxycholecalciferol in phosphorus-deficient diets of broilers. Journal of Poultry Science2012;49:34-38.).

Serum minerals

Dietary NPP increased serum P when 1a-OH-D3 was not added to the diets in this study. This result agrees with the findings of Mohammed et al. (1991Mohammed A, Gibney MJ, Taylor TG. The effects of dietary levels of inorganic phosphorus, calcium and cholecalciferol on the digestibility of phytate-P by the chick. British Journal of Nutrition1991;66:251-259.) and Han et al. (2009Han JC, Yang XD, Zhang T, Li H, Li WL, Zhang ZY, et al. Effects of 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol on growth performance, parameters of tibia and plasma, meat quality, and type IIb sodium phosphate cotransporter gene expression of one- to twenty-one-day-old broilers. Poultry Science2009c;88:323-329. a), who found that the increase in dietary NPP level increased plasma P level, but reduced plasma Ca levels in 42-day-old broilers.

The addition of 1a-OH-D3 did not significantly affect serum P levels in our study. Previous studies have shown that high levels of vitamin D3 increased blood P levels (Mohammed et al., 1991Mohammed A, Gibney MJ, Taylor TG. The effects of dietary levels of inorganic phosphorus, calcium and cholecalciferol on the digestibility of phytate-P by the chick. British Journal of Nutrition1991;66:251-259.; Rao et al., 2007Rao SVR, Raju MVLN, Reddy MR. Performance of broiler chicks fed high levels of cholecalciferol in diets containing sub-optimal levels of calcium and non-phytate phosphorus. Animal Feed Science and Technology 2007;134:77-88.). As the metabolite of vitamin D, 1a-OH-D3 also has positive effects on serum P levels (Edwards, 2002Edwards Jr, HM. Studies on the efficacy of cholecalciferol and derivatives for stimulating phytate utilization in broilers. Poultry Science2002;81:1026-1031.; Han et al., 2009Han JC, Yang XD, Zhang T, Li H, Li WL, Zhang ZY, et al. Effects of 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol on growth performance, parameters of tibia and plasma, meat quality, and type IIb sodium phosphate cotransporter gene expression of one- to twenty-one-day-old broilers. Poultry Science2009c;88:323-329. c; 2012Han JC, Liu Y, Yao JH, Wang JQ, Qu HX, Yan YF, et al. Dietary calcium levels reduce the efficacy of one alpha-hydroxycholecalciferol in phosphorus-deficient diets of broilers. Journal of Poultry Science2012;49:34-38.). The compound 1a-OH-D3 is rapidly metabolized to 1,25-(OH)2-D3 in chicks (Edelstein et al., 1978Edelstein S, Noff D, Freeman D, Sheves M, Mazur Y. Synthesis of 1alpha-hydroxy [7-3H] cholecalciferol and its metabolism in the chick. Biochemical Journal 1978;176:111-117.). Active 1,25-(OH)2-D3 increases 32P uptake in isolated chick intestinal cells (Zhao & Nemere, 2002Zhao B, Nemere I.1,25-(OH)2D3-mediated phosphate uptake in isolated chick intestinal cells effect of 24,25-(OH)2D3, signal transduction activators, and age. Journal of Cellular Biochemistry 2002;86:497-508.). Further research has shown that PKCa and PKCb in protein kinase C (PKC) are involved in steroid-stimulated phosphate uptake in isolated intestinal epithelial cells from vitamin D-replete chicks (Tunsophon & Nemere, 2010Tunsophon S, Nemere I. Protein kinase C isotypes in signal transduction for the 1,25D3-MARRS receptor (ERp57/PDIA3) in steroid hormone-stimulated phosphate uptake. Steroids 2010;75:307-313.).

Studies have shown that blood Ca levels of broiler chickens may be increased (Rao et al., 2007Rao SVR, Raju MVLN, Reddy MR. Performance of broiler chicks fed high levels of cholecalciferol in diets containing sub-optimal levels of calcium and non-phytate phosphorus. Animal Feed Science and Technology 2007;134:77-88.), not affected (Mohammed et al., 1991Mohammed A, Gibney MJ, Taylor TG. The effects of dietary levels of inorganic phosphorus, calcium and cholecalciferol on the digestibility of phytate-P by the chick. British Journal of Nutrition1991;66:251-259.), or even reduced (Edwards, 2002Edwards Jr, HM. Studies on the efficacy of cholecalciferol and derivatives for stimulating phytate utilization in broilers. Poultry Science2002;81:1026-1031.) by dietary vitamin D3. Han et al. (2009Han JC, Yang XD, Zhang T, Li H, Li WL, Zhang ZY, et al. Effects of 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol on growth performance, parameters of tibia and plasma, meat quality, and type IIb sodium phosphate cotransporter gene expression of one- to twenty-one-day-old broilers. Poultry Science2009c;88:323-329. c) found that 1a-OH-D3 decreases plasma Ca levels. The present study showed that 1a-OH-D3 did not significantly affect serum Ca level. The different response of blood Ca to vitamin D among studies may be related to the dietary Ca to P levels and their ratios. Vitamin D3 and its metabolites regulate the balance between Ca and P in animal blood.

Tibia mineralization

Low dietary P levels decreased tibia weight, length, ash, and Ca and P content in broilers (Mohammed et al., 1991Mohammed A, Gibney MJ, Taylor TG. The effects of dietary levels of inorganic phosphorus, calcium and cholecalciferol on the digestibility of phytate-P by the chick. British Journal of Nutrition1991;66:251-259.). Similar results were found in the present study. Another study showed that the dietary Ca to P ratio regulated bone mineralization and turnover by affecting the intestinal Ca and P transport in vitamin D receptor knockout mice (Masuyama et al., 2003Masuyama R, Nakaya Y, Katsumata S, Kajita Y, Uehara M, Tanaka S, et al. Dietary calcium and phosphorus ratio regulates bone mineralization and turnover in vitamin D receptor knockout mice by affecting intestinal calcium and phosphorus absorption. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 2003;18:1217-1226.). Onyango et al. (2003Onyango EM, Hester PY, Stroshine R, Adeola O. Bone densitometry as an indicator of percentage tibia ash in broiler chicks fed varying dietary calcium and phosphorus levels. Poultry Science2003;82:1787-1791.) reported that BWG, FI, FE, bone ash content, bone mineral content (BMC), and bone mineral density (BMD) of broilers increased linearly as dietary Ca and P levels increased. Rao et al. (2006Rao SVR, Raju MVLN, Reddy MR, Pavani P. Interaction between dietary calcium and non-phytate phosphorus levels on growth, bone mineralization and mineral excretion in commercial broilers. Animal Feed Science and Technology2006;131:133-148.) found that 42-day-old broilers presented the highest tibia breaking-strength and ash content when the ratio of dietary Ca to NPP was 2.0. The present study showed that chicks fed 1a-OH-D3 presented the greatest tibia breaking-strength, weight, length, width, and ash weight values when dietary NPP level was 0.30% and the analyzed Ca to NPP ratio was 1.97.

Vitamin D deficiency impaired bone mineralization, and resulted in low tibia breaking-strength, weight, length, width, ash weight values and low ash, Ca and P percentages in broilers in groups 1 to 6 in the present study. High levels of vitamin D3 increased bone growth and mineral deposition in broiler chickens (Whitehead et al., 2004Whitehead CC, McCormack HA, McTeir L, Fleming RH. High vitamin D3 requirements in broilers for bone quality and prevention of tibial dyschondroplasia and interactions with dietary calcium, available phosphorus and vitamin A. British Poultry Science2004;45:425-436.; Kim et al., 2011Kim WK, Bloomfield SA, Ricke SC. Effects of age, vitamin D3, and fructooligosaccharides on bone growth and skeletal integrity of broiler chicks. Poultry Science2011;90:2425-2432.). As a metabolite of vitamin D, 1a-OH-D3 has higher bioavailability than vitamin D3 (Edwards et al., 2002). The present study showed that 1a-OH-D3 significantly improved tibia growth and mineralization in chicks. The positive effect of 1a-OH-D3 on bone calcification was demonstrated by Biehl & Baker (1997Biehl RR, Baker DH. Utilization of phytate and nonphytate phosphorus in chicks as affected by source and amount of vitamin D3. Journal of Animal Science1997; 75:2986-2993. ), Edwards (2002), Driver (2004Driver JP. Performance and bone quality of the modern broiler chicken as influenced by dietary calcium, phosphorus, phytase and 1alpha-hydroxycholecalciferol [thesis]. Athenas: The University of Georgia; 2004.) and Han et al. (2009Han JC, Yang XD, Zhang T, Li H, Li WL, Zhang ZY, et al. Effects of 1a-hydroxycholecalciferol on growth performance, parameters of tibia and plasma, meat quality, and type IIb sodium phosphate cotransporter gene expression of one- to twenty-one-day-old broilers. Poultry Science2009c;88:323-329. c; 2012). Addition of 1a-OH-D3 stimulates the absorption and retention of Ca and P after it is converted into 1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol (1,25-(OH)2-D3). Ichikawa et al. (1995Ichikawa F, Sato K, Nanjo M, Nishii Y, Shinki T, Takahashi N, et al. Mouse primary osteoblasts express vitamin D3 25-hydroxylase mRNA and convert 1alpha-hydroxyvitamin D3 into 1alpha,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3. Bone 1995:16:129-135.) found that the expression of vitamin D3 25-hydroxylase mRNA was the highest in the liver, followed by the duodenum, calvaria, lung, kidney, skin, and long bone, and lowest in the spleen. Those authors found that 1a-OH-D3 was converted into 1,25-(OH)2-D3 in the skeletal tissues of mouse by hydroxylation at the 25-position. Active 1,25-(OH)2-D3 increased the bone ash content of chicks (Edwards, 1989; Mitchell et al., 1997Mitchell RD, Edwards Jr HM, Mcdaniel GR, Rowland GN. Dietary 1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol has variable effects on the incidences of leg abnormalities, plasma vitamin D metabolites, and vitamin D receptors in chickens. Poultry Science1997;76:338-345.).

Carcass traits

Inadequate P levels reduce broiler carcass yield (Chen & Moran, 1995Chen X, Moran Jr ET. The withdrawal feed of broilers: carcass responses to dietary phosphorus. Journal of Applied Poultry Research 1995;4:69-82.). However, in the present study, dietary NPP levels did not affect carcass yield or relative weights of the liver, heart, or kidney.

The carcass and breast meat yields of broilers increased when phytase and 1a-OH-D3 were added to low P diets (Driver, 2004Driver JP. Performance and bone quality of the modern broiler chicken as influenced by dietary calcium, phosphorus, phytase and 1alpha-hydroxycholecalciferol [thesis]. Athenas: The University of Georgia; 2004.). Similar results were found in the present study. Vitamin D deficiency reduced muscle growth and meat production of broilers in groups 1 to 6. The addition of 1a-OH-D3 increased carcass and breast yield by decreasing the relative weights of the organs in 21-day-old chicks.

CONCLUSION

Dietary NPP levels affected BWG, FI, FE, mortality, serum P level, and tibia mineralization parameters (except width). Vitamin D deficiency impaired broiler growth, bone quality, and meat yield, and increased mortality. The addition of 1a-OH-D3 improved growth performance and tibia mineralization as well as carcass and breast yields, but decreased the relative weights of the liver, heart, and kidney. A significant interaction between NPP and 1a-OH-D3 was observed for BWG, FE, mortality, serum Ca and Pi levels, tibia breaking-strength, ash weight, Ca content, and breast meat yield and heart relative weight. These data suggest that broilers fed with 5 μg of1a-OH-D3 per kg of diet achieve optimal growth performance and tibia mineralization when dietary NPP was 0.30% and the analyzed Ca to NPP ratio was 1.97 in the present study.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

This study was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31101732), Innovation Scientists and Technicians Troop Construction Projects of Henan Province, and Shangqiu Normal University Foundation (2013GGJS10).

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Publication Dates

  • Publication in this collection
    Oct-Dec 2015

History

  • Received
    Aug 2014
  • Accepted
    Mar 2015
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