Effect of Corticosterone on Hypothalamic Corticotropin-releasing Hormone Expression in Broiler Chicks (Gallus gallus domesticus) Fed a High Energy Diet

  • Song, Zhigang (College of Animal Science and Technology, Shandong Agricultural University) ;
  • Yuan, Lei (College of Animal Science and Technology, Shandong Agricultural University) ;
  • Jiao, Hongchao (College of Animal Science and Technology, Shandong Agricultural University) ;
  • Lin, Hai (College of Animal Science and Technology, Shandong Agricultural University)
  • Received : 2011.06.03
  • Accepted : 2011.08.09
  • Published : 2011.12.01


This paper reports the peripheral and central effect of corticosterone on feed intake and hypothalamic corticotropinreleasing hormone (CRH) gene expression in chicks fed a high energy diet. Three experiments were conducted: corticosterone was supplemented to the feed (30 mg/kg diet), injected subcutaneously (s.c., 4 mg/kg body weight) or intracerebroventricularly (i.c.v., 4 ng). The results showed that dietary corticosterone significantly increased feed intake. The s.c. corticosterone administration increased feed intake within 1 to 3 h and at 1 to 5 h after the injection. The i.c.v. corticosterone administration increased feed intake within 1 h after the injection, but not at 1 to 3 h. Dietary supplementation and s.c. injection of corticosterone decreased the CRH gene expression in the hypothalamus. Therefore, peripheral corticosterone exerted a decreased effect on hypothalamic CRH mRNA levels, and corticosterone had a stimulating effect on feed intake in broiler chicks fed a high energy diet.


Broiler Chicks;Corticosterone;Corticotropin-releasing Hormone;Feed Intake


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