Effects of in ovo injection of amino acids on hatching performance, cell-mediated immunity and blood profile of FUNAAB Alpha broiler chickens
In the study, the effects of in ovo injection of amino acids (L-methionine, L-lysine, and Larginine) and their combinations on hatching traits, post-hatch performance, cell-mediated immune response and blood profile of FUNAAB Alpha broiler chicken were evaluated. The study was carried out in two trials. In the first trial, a total of 360 hatching eggs of indigenous chicken were fumigated, weighed and placed in the incubator. On day 14 of incubation, candling was done and eggs with living embryos were distributed into four treatments; Control (un-injected eggs), L-methionine injected eggs, L-arginine injected eggs and Llysineinjected eggs. Each egg was injected 0.5 mL solution of the amino acid on day 18. Hatched chicks were distributed into three replicates containing 30 chicks each. In trial 2, another 360 hatching eggs were used in the treatments which were; Control (eggs without amino acid injection), L-arginine injected eggs, combination of L-arginine and Lmethionine injected eggs and combination of L-arginine and L-lysine injected eggs. On day 21 post-hatch, cell-mediated immune response, haematological and serum biochemical parameters were determined. Data obtained from the two trials were subjected to Completely Randomized Design. Results revealed the highest hatchability of 70.27% in the control treatment (un-injected), followed by 51.35% in arginine-injected eggs with the lowest (2.70%) in methionine-injected eggs. Arginine was found to enhance hatchability while L-methionine injected in ovo decreased hatchability. In the second trial, the results showed highest hatchability (89.58%) in eggs under the control, followed by 39.29%, 30.80% and 21.43% in eggs injected with the combination of arginine and lysine, arginine injected eggs, and those with arginine and methionine combination, respectively. Significant (p<0.05) differences in growth performance were only observed in the feed conversion ratio and percentage survivability. Better feed conversion ratio of 2.18 and 2.29 were recorded in birds injected with arginine and the control as against those subjected to combined arginine and methionine (2.96) as well as combined arginine and lysine (3.12). Survivability of 100% was recorded in chickens from arginine-injected eggs in ovo injection and chickens from eggs injected with the combination of arginine and methionine. The study concluded that in ovo injection of arginine either singly or in combination with lysine or methionine positively influenced hatchability, chick weight and growth performance without any deleterious effect on the blood profile of the post-hatch chicks.
Keywords: L-arginine, L-methionine, L-lysine, Cell-mediated Immunity, Blood profile, Duodenal histology, Indigenous Chicken