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Advances in Animal and Veterinary Sciences

Review Article
Adv. Anim. Vet. Sci. 6(2): 63-69
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Kumarasamy Deepa1*, M.R. Purushothaman2, Purushothaman Vasanthakumar3, Karuppsamy Sivakumar4

1Department of Animal Nutrition, Veterinary College and Research Institute, Namakkal – 637 002; 2Department of Animal Nutrition, Veterinary College and Research Institute, Namakkal – 637 002; 3Veterinary University Training and Research Centre (VUTRC), Karur, 4Department of Livestock Production Management, Veterinary College and Research Institute, Namakkal – 637 002m, Tamil Nadu, India.

Abstract | In modern commercial broiler chicken production, the birds are inevitably exposed to various stress due to rapid growth, intensive poultry rearing, high stock density resulting in diminishing immune competence, gut health etc. This paves way to greater susceptibility of the birds to illness, infection and mortality. To overcome these losses, mostly antibiotics are being incorporated in feed. These antibiotics have possible lead to the emergence and dissemination of multiple antibiotic resistant pathogens and reduction in response to human and animal infections. The ban of antibiotic growth promoters in many countries necessitates to find an alternative to suppress microbial load particularly the gut. Probiotics, prebiotics or organic acids have being included to replace antibiotics. Of which, prebiotics are costlier affecting economics in poultry production, while probiotics have different degrees of survivability in feed and in the gut environment. Organic acids could be the possible choice as alternative to antibiotics. In poultry production, organic acids have not gained as much attention as in swine production (Langhout, 2000).Generally, short chain fatty acids (formic acid, acetic acid, butyric acid) are preferred acidifiers, among which, butyric acid (BA) is considered as the prime enterocyte energy source, necessary for development of Gut Associated Lymphoid Tissue (GALT) (Friedman and Bar-Shira, 2005) and has the highest bactericidal efficacy against the acid-intolerant species such as Escherichia coli and Salmonella sp. (Kwan and Ricke, 2005) with selective stimulation of beneficial gut bacteria.

Keywords | Broiler chicken, Antibiotic substitute, Organic acid, Butyric acid