2013 Volume 50 Issue 1 Pages 44-52
The objective of this study was to determine the appropriate concentration of dietary supplementation of curcumin, and its effect on growth performance, intestinal morphology, fat metabolism and nutrients utilization of broiler chicks. Four hundred eighty, 1-day-old Arbor Acre broiler chicks were allocated into four groups with 6 replicates of 20 birds per cage. Birds were fed a corn-soybean basal diet supplemented with curcumin at 0 (control, CRM0), 100 (CRM100), 150 (CRM150) and 200 mg/kg (CRM200) levels for 42 days. All birds were kept in wire floor triple deck battery cages under semi-intensive housing management. The results revealed that dietary supplementation of curcumin at 200 mg/kg significantly improved live body weight and feed efficiency at marketing age (42 d); while, there was no significant difference on feed intake as compared to control. Curcumin significantly improved utilization of apparent metabolizable energy and decreased abdominal fat at 42 d in CRM150 and CRM200 broilers, respectively. Plasma T4 hormone level and fat utilization were significantly increased; while plasma cholesterol level was significantly reduced in dose dependent manner for CRM200 broilers. The results showed that dietary supplementation of curcumin influenced the histomorphological measurements of small intestinal villi. The villus height was significantly increased in duodenum, jejunum and ileum in curcumin supplemented broilers. Villus width was also significantly increased in duodenum and jejunum (42 d). While, there was no significant difference in ileum villus width. Furthermore, villus height to crypt depth ratio was significantly increased in all segments (except jejunum 42 d) of small intestine in CRM200 group; however, the intestinal crypt depth was lowered in curcumin supplemented broilers. In conclusion, supplementation of curcumin at 200 mg/kg feed enhanced the growth performance and fat metabolism, and increased villus absorptive area of small intestine, resulting in improved nutrients absorption in CRM200 group.