The Efficacy of DL-Methionine Methylsulfonium Chloride on Performance Characteristics and Intestinal Tract Integrity in Broilers
Type of DegreeThesis
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DL-methionine methylsulfonium chloride (MMSC) is a methionine derivative previously shown to modulate the immune system and to protect intestinal membrane cells in humans and swine. It has also been shown to improve body weight gain and feed efficiency in cattle and hogs. Four 42-day trails were conducted to evaluate the effects of MMSC on growth performance, feed efficiency, and gut integrity in broilers. The first two experiments utilized 384 day-old mixed-sex broilers that were randomly allotted to one of six dietary treatments. Experiment 1 employed a corn-soy basal diet with additions of MMSC at 0, 200, 400, 600, 800, or 1000 ppm. Experiment 2 utilized MMSC as a substitute for synthetic DL-methionine on a molecular weight equivalency at 0, 20, 40, 60, 80, or 100%. Results from both experiments indicated no significant effects (P > 0.05) on final body weight gain, feed consumption, and feed efficiency due to additions of MMSC. The additions of MMSC in Experiment 1 failed to improve villi length, villi width, crypt depth, and mucosal depth of the small intestine. Beneficial effects to villi characteristics of the duodenum, jejunum, and ileum were seen in Experiment 2 as the amount of MMSC increased in the diet, with the greatest effects found in the duodenal measures. The final two experiments utilized 384 (Experiment 3) or 480 (Experiment 4) day-old straight-run broilers that were randomly allotted to one of six dietary treatments. Both experiments employed a corn-soy basal diet with additions of MMSC at 0, 200, 400, 600, 800, or 1000 ppm. Experiment 3 birds were provided 1 ml of a cocci cocktail containing E. acervulina (125,000 oocytes/ml), E. maxima (25,000 oocytes/ml), and E. tenella (15,000 oocytes/ml) via oral gavage on day 10. Fecal scores were determined from day 4 to 10 post inoculation. Birds utilized in Experiment 4 were administered 0.1 ml of Salmonella kentucky (108 cfu/ml) on day of placement and re-dosed with 1ml (106 cfu/ml) on day 14. Çecal samples were collected weekly (4 birds/trt) from days 7 to 28 to determine presence of Salmonella. Birds in neither experiment showed differences (P > 0.05) in body weight gain, feed consumption, or feed efficiency. In cocci-challenged birds, MMSC had little effect on the villi measures of length and width, but did provide varying results in the crypt depth measures as levels increased in the diet. MMSC was able to provided some positive effects in the intestinal tract of birds challenged with S. Kentucky, especially within the duodenum at the 800 and 1000 ppm addition levels. No differences of salmonella persistence were detected among the six treatments.