Effect of Low Ambient Temperature on the Concentration of Free Radicals Related to Ascites in Broiler Chickens

  • Han, Bo (College of Veterinary Medicine, China Agricultural University) ;
  • Yoon, Soon-Seek (National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service) ;
  • Han, Hong-Ryul (College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University) ;
  • Qu, Wei-jie (College of Veterinary Medicine, China Agricultural University) ;
  • Nigussie, Fikru (College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University)
  • Received : 2004.10.16
  • Accepted : 2005.02.16
  • Published : 2005.08.01


A flock of Arbor Acres chickens were reared in cages and provided with high energy pelleted feed. At 14 d of age, a total of 350 birds were separated into 3 groups randomly as follows: 100 birds were exposed to ambient temperature of 20$^{\circ}C$ as a control group, 150 birds were exposed to lower ambient temperature of 11$^{\circ}C$ to induce ascites (group I), and another group of 100 birds were exposed to lower ambient temperature of 11$^{\circ}C$ and fed diet containing 1% L-arginine for ascitic prophylactic treatment (group II). Blood and tissue samples (lung and liver) were collected from chickens at 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 wk of age subsequently, to analyze the concentration and activities of free radicals, mononaldehyde (MDA), superoxide dismutase (SOD), Nitric Oxide (NO) and Nitric oxide synthase (NOS). The results showed that the prevalence of ascites in the control, group I and group II was 3%, 9.33% and 3% respectively (p<0.01). The concentration of free radicals in the lungs of 3 wks old preascitic broilers in group I was significantly higher than in the corresponding control group (p<0.05). The concentrations of free radicals in lung and liver in the 7 wk period, and that of NO and SOD in the plasma were significantly lower in group I than in the control group (p<0.01). However, the accumulated MDA contents in group I were higher than in the control group and group II (p<0.05), respectively. In the same way, the activity of NOS in group II was higher than both group I and control group (p<0.01) during the 7 wk period. There was no significant difference between SOD activities of group II and the control group (p>0.05), and also insignificant difference between NOS in group I and the control group (p>0.05). The results of this study indicate that there was a significant decrease in the concentration of MDA in group II. On the other hand, the concentration of free radicals decreased and MDA concentration increased in group I during the 7 wk period. The reduction in concentration of MDA in group II, following arginine supplementation may be associated with the scavenging activity of NO.


Supported by : postdoctoral foundation of China (PDFC)


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