Articles | Volume 56, issue 1
10 Oct 2013
 | 10 Oct 2013

Intermittent feeding programme and addition of Bacillus subtilis based probiotics to the diet of growing broiler chickens: Influence on growth, hepatic enzymes and serum lipid metabolites profile

H. R. Aliakbarpour, M. Chamani, G. Rahimi, A. A. Sadeghi, and D. Qujeq

Abstract. This study was conducted to examine the effects of Intermittent feeding programme (IFP) and Bacillus subtilis-based probiotic (BSP) addition in diet on liver malic enzyme and isocitrate dehydrogenase activity, lipid metabolism and performance in broiler chickens. Five hundred and four one-day old male broiler chicks were randomly allocated in four experimental treatments (T1, T2, T3 and T4). Groups T1 (control diet) and T3 (Bacillus subtilis-based probiotic diet) were fed ad libitum, whereas groups T2 (control diet) and T4 (Bacillus subtilis-based probiotic diet) served as IFP from day 8 to the end of the experiment. The data on initial body weight, weekly feed consumption and body weight gain were recorded up to six weeks of age. Carcass composition, blood parameters and hepatic enzyme activity were measured at the end of the experiment. Although body weight gain was not significantly different among any of the treatments, the birds raised under IFP consumed significantly (P<0.05) lower feed (207 g) and utilized their feed more efficiently (1.78) than those of the control group fed ad libitum (1.84). Carcass weight as a percentage of live weight was not affected by probiotic supplementation on the diet, but IFP significantly reduced (P<0.05) broiler carcass weight. However, the liver malic and isocitrate dehydrogenase enzyme activity was not significantly different between IFP and BSP groups. All serum lipid metabolites concentration decreased (P<0.05) with probiotic treatment. It may be concluded that dietary supplementation with BSP may influence the pathway of fat metabolism through promotion and/or suppression of serum lipid metabolites.