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Effects of beta adrenergic agonist on female broiler chicks.


Excess carcass fatness in broiler chicks is now of focus to both whom consume and produce. In taking high amounts of fat could be certain cause for cancer and cardiovascular diseases [8]. Fat deposition can be influenced by environmental causes such as nutrition and genetic factors [9]. Genetic manipulate influences the quantity of fat while, nutrition factors cause both quantity and quality of fat. Therefore

it's better to mostly focus on the nutrition factors [11]. Fat metabolism can be manipulated by some feed additives. Ractopamine hydrochloride (RAC) is used for altering fat metabolism and deposition, according to their lipolytic and growth promoter properties. Since 1963, [beta]-adrenergic ([beta]-AR) agonist was used in broiler diets, due to its effects on growth and carcass traits [4]. In 2003 the Food and drug administration approved RAC is a [beta]-AR agonist to be used in cattle and swine diets [22]. [beta]-AR agonists modify effects on growth and fat metabolism [13]. These drugs mediated protein turn over and muscle growth [17]. Glucose lactate and insulin in the blood serum were increased by [beta]-AR agonists [1,2,14].

The aim of this research was to consider the effect of RAC on growth performance and blood biochemical parameters in female broiler chickens.

Materials and Methods

One hundred eighty (180) Ross female broiler chicks were randomly distributed into 12 pens, allocated to three dietary treatment groups with 5 replicates for each treatment. The trail was conducted using 3x5 completely randomized design for treatments (five replicates per treatment) with three levels of ractopamine as the main effect. Diets were formulated to contain three levels of ractopamine (0, 5 and 10 mg/kg). Ingredients and details of the designated diets are presented in Table 1.

Experimental diets were fed from 3 to 6 weeks of age. Ractopamine hydrochloride (Sinoway International Jiangsu, china) was used. Food intake, body weight and feed conversion ratio were evaluated at the end of experiment. At the end of experiment (day 42) from each replicate two chickens were selected randomly and blood samples was taken from jugular vein. Serum was separated (centrifuged 10 min; 5000g) and stored at -20[degrees]C before analysis. Concentrations of albumin, glucose, triglyceride, cholesterol, uric acid and BUN in the serum were measured by an enzymatic method based on Darman kave Diagnostics Kits (Res. Lab. Isfahan, Iran. 2002). Arcsine square transformation of data was carried out to achieve homogeneity of variance. Data processing was completed by the GLM procedure of the statistical program [18]. Significant differences between main effects and their interactions were determined by least square means (LSMEANS) using a significant probability value (P<0.05).

Results and Discussion

The effect of RAC on DBWG, FI and FCR are presented in Table 2. RAC didn't have any significant effects on the mentioned parameters. [3] announced no significant effect of clenbuterol on weight gain and final body weight of broilers. The Addition of cimaterol to the diet of broiler did not improve DBWG [4]. In contrast, several researchers have shown the positive effect of [beta]-AR agonist on growth rate [25,17,20,7,]. [13] reported an improvement in DBWG and FI of broilers according to supplemental [beta]-AR agonist. The response of broilers to supplemental [beta]-AR agonist can be different in type and dose of [beta]-AR agonist, broiler strain, age and also duration of [beta]-AR agonist consumption [13,3]. The effect of RAC on blood parameter is presented in Table 3. Blood glucose was increased by using RAC (p<0.05). Blood cholesterol, uric acid, BUN and albumin were decreased by adding RAC (p<0.05). Many hormones are effective in releasing insulin. [beta]-AR agonist (mainly epinephrine) with stimulating the secretion of glucose block the desertion of insulin [16]. [beta]-AR agonist increased blood glucose [2,6,15]. Increasing the amount of glucose by the utilization [beta]-AR agonist could be the reason for enhance of hormone sensitive lipase on fats and their uses besides glucose as [beta]-oxidation [17]. Using [beta]-AR agonist decreased the amount of blood insulin of sheep [13]. This decreasing was the reason for the increase of blood glucose amount and lipolysis. On the other hand by using [beta]-AR agonist gluconeogenesis and glucose increased [8,21]. [beta]-AR agonist increased blood glucose as the other researchers showed [6,15]. [beta]-AR agonist plus increasing gluconeogenesis, block glycolysis [22]. Blood cholesterol and triglyceride decreased when RAC was added to the diet. These results indicated that RAC alters the trend of fat metabolism also shifts fat towards [beta]-oxidation. RAC was effective in the mobilization of the fat and their movement according to the other researchers [11]. RAC reduced uric acid, BUN and albumin. Changes in blood uric acid, BUN and albumin suggest an involvement of RAC in protein metabolism (Table 3). Especially the reduction of BUN and uric acid results the increase of protein metabolism and maybe sparing effects in using protein after adding RAC. The results of RAC in increasing blood protein and also percentage of thigh confirm the finding of [11], who reported simulative effect of RAC in protein synthesis. Our results are in agreements with the report [24], regarding simulative effect of RAC on protein synthesis.


RAC didn't have any interference in the performance of female broiler chicks. RAC increased blood glucose amount and reduced triglyceride and cholesterol so it affected the [beta]-oxidation. RAC stimulate protein synthesis and changes trend of fat metabolism.


The authors would like to give their special thanks and regards to Islamic Azad University, Shabestar and Shahrekord Branch, for supporting this experiment.


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(1) Farshid Kheiri, (2) Javad Pourreza, (1) Hahya Ebrahimnezhad, (1) Kambiz Bazeradl, (2) Syed Mohammad Ali Jalali Haji-Abadi and (3) Javad Nasr

(1) Department of Animal Science, Shabestar Branch, Islamic Azad University, Shabestar, Iran.

(2) Department of Animal Science Shahrekord Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sharekord, Iran.

(3) Department of of Animal Science, Saveh Branch, Islamic Azad University, Saveh, Iran.

Farshid Kheiri, Javad Pourreza, Hahya Ebrahimnezhad, Kambiz Bazeradl, Syed Mohammad Ali Jalali Haji-Abadi and Javad Nasr: Effects of Beta Adrenergic Agonist on Female Brioler Chicks.

Corresponding Author

Farshid Kheiri, Department of Animal Science, Shabestar Branch, Islamic Azad University, Shabester, Iran.

Table 1: Ingredients and composition
of the experimental diets.

             Diet                  1        2        3

Ractopamine (mg [Kg.sup.-1])       0        5        10
Ingredients (%)
Basal Portion (1)                99.959   99.959   99.959
Ractopamine                        0      0.001    0.0005
Sand                             0.041     0.04    0.0405
Chemical Analysis (%)
Metabolizable Energy              3100     3100     3100
  (Kcal [Kg.sup.-1])
Crude Protein (%)                19.375   19.375   19.375
Ca (%)                           0.871    0.871    0.871
P (%)                            0.339    0.339    0.339
Met + Cys (%)                    0.6975   0.6975   0.6975
Lys (%)                          0.968    0.968    0.968

(1) Basal portion contained: 64.67% corn, 25.74%
soybean meal (CP: 44%), 4.21% fish meal (CP: 60.05),
2.737% soybean oil, 1.2% oyster shell, 0.51%
Dicalcium phosphate, 0.042% DL-methionine, 0.2%
salt, 0.15% Sodium bicarbonate, 0.25% mineral
premix, 0.25% vitamin permix. Vitamin and mineral
premix includes the following per kilogram of diet:
vitamin A (Vitamin A acetate), 4960 U; vitamin D
(cholecalciferol), 1653 U; vitamin E (dl-[alpha]
tocopherol acetate), 27 U; menadione (menadione
sodium bisulfate complex), 0.99 mg; vitamin
[b.sub.12] (cyanocobalamin), 0.015 mg; filoc
acid, 0.8 mg; d-pantothenic acid (calcium
pantothenate), 15 mg; riboflavin, 5.4 mg;
niacin (niacinamide), 45 mg; thiamin
mononitrate, 27 mg; d-biotin, 0.07 mg;
pyridoxine hydrochloride, 5.3mg; manganese
(manganousoxide), 90 mg; zinc oxide, 83mg;
iron sulfate monohydrate, 121 mg; copper
sulfate pentahydrate, 12 mg; iodine
(calcium iodate), 0.5 mg; selenium
(sodium selenite), 0.3 mg.

Table 2: Effects of supplemental dietary
Ractopamine on performance of female
brioler chicks.

  Ractopamine            ADG (1)            Feed Intake       FCR (2)
(mg [kg.sup.-1])    ( g [bird.sup.-1]    ( g [bird.sub.-1]
                      [day.sup.-1])        [day.sup.-1])

        0                 78.670              159.467         2.0698
        5                 76.811              149.986         2.0269
       10                 73.933              147.097          1.925
     P Value               n.s                  n.s             n.s
     SE (3)               2.890                3.076           0.072

Columns calues with same superscript or not
superscript are not significantly different
(P<0.05). (1) - ADG: Average daily gain;
(2) - FCR: Feed conversion ratio;
(3) - S.E: Standard error.

Table 3: Effects of supplemental dietary
Ractopamine on blood biochemical parameters
of female broiler chicks.

  Ractopamine          Glucose          Cholesterol      Triglyceride
(mg [kg.sup.-1])   (mg [dL.sup.-1])   (mg [dL.sup.-1])    (mg dL-1)

       0             310.443 (b)         101.09 (a)       97.728 (a)
       5             287.605 (c)         67.32 (b)        90.851 (a)
       10            339.499 (a)         66.18 (b)        64.244 (b)
    P Value               *                  *                *
       SE               16.772             8.307            6.093

  Ractopamine         Uric Acid             Bun1
(mg [kg.sup.-1])   (mg [dL.sup.-1])   (mg [dL.sup.-1])

       0              4.371 (a)          1.866 (a)
       5              3.851 (ab)         1.159 (a)
       10             3.226 (b)          0.992 (b)
    P Value               *                  *
       SE               0.225              0.220

  Ractopamine          Albumin
(mg [kg.sup.-1])   (g [dL.sup.-1])

       0              5.205 (a)
       5              3.692 (b)
       10             3.690 (b)
    P Value               *
       SE               0.346

Columns values with same superscript or not
superscript are not significantly different
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Title Annotation:Original Article
Author:Kheiri, Farshid; Pourreza, Javad; Ebrahimnezhad, Hahya; Bazeradl, Kambiz; Haji-Abadi, Syed Mohammad
Publication:Advances in Environmental Biology
Article Type:Report
Date:Sep 1, 2011
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