The aim of this research was to investigate the deposition of carnosine in broiler muscles by feeding treatments comprising β-alanine, L-histidine, and magnesium oxide in various concentrations. The research was carried out on 120 Cobb 500 broilers divided into four groups. From weeks four to six, broilers were fed finisher mixtures as follows: P1, control group; P2, 0.5% β-alanine + 0.24% MgO; P3, 0.25% L-histidine + 0.24% MgO; and P4, 0.20% β-alanine + 0.10% L-histidine + 0.24% MgO. This paper presents the weights of broilers and their carcasses, portions of main parts of carcasses, technological quality of breast muscles, and concentrations of carnosine in breast and thigh muscles. The following traits of muscle tissue quality were measured: initial and final pH value (45 min after slaughtering pH1, and 24 h after cooling pH2), drip loss, color (Minolta colorimeter, expressed as CIE L*, CIE a*, and CIE b* values), meat softness, and cooking loss. Data on relative concentration of protein carbonyl (nmol/mg protein) in the muscles of breasts and thighs and levels of thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS) in fresh and frozen breasts muscles (nmol/mg of tissue) are presented. Statistical analysis proved that feeding treatments had an effect on the live weight of broilers in the 4th, 5th, and 6th weeks of fattening (P<0.05), as well as on the carcass quality at slaughter (P<0.05; except the portion of wings), pH1 value (P=0.035), CIE a* indicator (P=0.007), drip loss (P=0.002), and meat texture (P=0.008). Compared to the control group, synthesis and deposition of carnosine were increased in breast muscles in groups P2, P3, and P4 by 7.51%, 10.62%, and 62.93%, respectively, and in thigh muscles by 61.05%, 78.95%, and 89.52%, respectively. It was also confirmed that feeding treatments influenced the level of TBARS in frozen broiler breast muscles (P=0.014).
This study aimed to investigate the effect of replacing fat in broiler grower diet with sucrose combined with supplementation of the synthetic amino acid lysine on growth performance, gastrointestinal morphology, and blood biochemical parameters in broiler chickens. Broilers were raised for 21 days and then divided into two treatment groups (n = 24 in each group). Two dietary treatments were used: corn-soy-based diet with oil (control) and corn-soy-based diet formulated with sucrose (3.30%) and lysine hydrochloride (3.36%). The experimental period was 21 days (from 21 to 42 days of age). At the end of week 6, all the birds in each treatment were slaughtered via neck slit, defeathered, and eviscerated for carcass and intestinal morphological characterization. Blood samples were collected to measure blood lipoprotein, triglyceride, and cholesterol levels. The results showed that supplementation of sucrose and lysine hydrochloride to broiler ration significantly (P < 0.05) decreased feed intake by half and reduced average daily gain during the study period compared to those observed in broilers fed control diet. Further, this supplementation significantly altered gastrointestinal morphology and blood lipoprotein (HDL and LDL) and total cholesterol levels. In conclusion, corn-soy-based diet fortified with sucrose (3.30%) and lysine hydrochloride (3.36%) within current nutrient specifications has a negative effect on broiler growth performance.
The aim of this study was to determine the effects of Toll-like receptor (TLR) ligands on the expression of cytokines in chicken follicular theca and to investigate whether nuclear factor-κB (NFκB) was involved in their expression. The follicular theca was collected from the largest follicle of laying hens. In experiment 1, the expression of TLRs in the theca interna and externa was confirmed using RT-PCR. The theca tissues were then incubated with or without Pam3CSK4 (TLR2 ligand), poly I:C (TLR3 ligand), LPS (TLR4 ligand), flagellin (TLR5 ligand), R837 (TLR7 ligand), and CpG-ODN (TLR21 ligand) for 3 h, after which cytokine expression (IL-1β, IL-6, TNFSF15, CXCLi2, IFN-α, and IFN-β) was analyzed by real-time PCR. In experiment 2, the theca tissues were incubated in a medium containing Pam3CSK4, poly I:C, LPS, or CpG-ODN with or without BAY 11-7085 (an inhibitor of NFκB) for 3 h. TLRs. The results of experiment 1 revealed that all TLRs, namely TLR1 (type 1 and 2), TLR2 (type 1 and 2), 3-5, 7, 15, and 21, were expressed in the follicular theca, although the PCR products of TLR1 (type 2) and TLR21 were faint. Moreover, Pam3CSK4 and LPS upregulated the expression of all detected cytokines, except for IFN-α, whose expression was not upregulated by LPS. Poly I:C upregulated the expression of IL-6, CXCLi2, and IFN-β, while CpG-ODN upregulated IL-1β. Flagellin and R837 did not significantly affect cytokine expression. In experiment 2, the expression of IL-1β, IL-6, CXCLi2 and IFN-β in tissues incubated with LPS was downregulated by BAY 11-7085. These results suggest that the innate immune system, including pattern recognition by TLRs and cytokine synthesis, occur in the theca; whereas, functions for recognition of bacterial patterns is more developed than that of viral ones.
The aim of this study was to determine the changes in the expression of avian β-defensins (AvBDs) and proinflammatory cytokines and localization of AvBD2 in the intestine of broiler embryos and chicks during growth. The ileum and cecum of embryonic day 19 (ED19) and of day-old (D0) and 7-day-old (D7) chicks were collected. Gene expression levels of 10 AvBDs (AvBD1-8, 10, and 12) and proinflammatory cytokines (IL-1β, -6, and -8) were analyzed using real-time PCR, and the localization of AvBD2 was examined by immunohistochemistry. Gene expression levels of AvBD1, 2, 6, and 7 in the ileum and of AvBD1 and 4 in the cecum were higher on ED19 than on D7. The expression of AvBD10 in the ileum was higher on D0 than on ED19, whereas the expression levels of AvBD8 and 10 in the cecum were higher on D0 than on ED19, and that of AvBD10 decreased on D7. The expression levels of IL-1β, -6, and -8 in the ileum were higher on D7 than on ED19. The expression levels of IL-1β, -6, and -8 in the cecum were higher on D0 than on ED19, and that of IL-1β and -6 declined on D7. AvBD2-positive cells were localized in the lamina propria beneath epithelial cells of villi and crypts. The number of positive cells in the cecum mucosa was greater on D0 than on ED19 and D7. In conclusion, we suggest that AvBDs are expressed in the ileum and cecum of embryos and chicks at high levels before or just after hatching and decrease by D7. The expression of proinflammatory cytokines in the ileum increases with growth until D7, but is the highest in the cecum around hatching. These AvBDs and proinflammatory cytokines may play roles in host defense in the intestinal mucosa of embryos and neonatal chicks.
With global warming, heat stress is becoming a pressing concern worldwide. In chickens, heat stress reduces food intake and growth, and increases body temperature and stress responses. Although it is believed that young chicks do not experience heat stress as they need a higher ambient temperature to survive, our series of studies in young chicks showed that they are sensitive to heat stress. This review summarizes current knowledge on amino acid metabolisms during heat stress, with special emphasis on the hypothermic functions of L-citrulline (L-Cit) and L-leucine (L-Leu), and the functions of neuropeptide Y (NPY) in terms of body temperature and heat stress regulation in chicks. Amino acid metabolism is severely affected by heat stress. For example, prolonged heat stress reduces plasma L-Cit in chicks and L-Leu in the brain and liver of embryos. L-Cit and L-Leu supplementation affords thermotolerance in young chicks. NPY expression is increased in the brains of heat-exposed chicks. NPY has a hypothermic action under control thermoneutral temperature and heat stress in chicks. The NPY-sub-receptor Y5 is a partial mediator of the hypothermic action of NPY. Further, NPY stimulates brain dopamine concentrations and acts as an anti-stress agent in heat-exposed fasted, but not fed chicks. In conclusion, young chicks can serve as a model animal for the study of heat stress in chickens. L-Cit, L-Leu, and NPY were identified as biomarkers of heat stress, with the potential to afford thermotolerance in chicks.
To determine whether buckwheat phytase can be used as an alternative phytase source, growth performance, bone quality and P retention were measured in broilers given non-phytate P-deficient diets. Non-germinated (BU) and germinated (GBU) buckwheat were used: they were ground and sieved to remove hulls before use. A total of 120 male broiler chicks (8 d of age) were divided into 8 groups (15 birds each) and given one of the following 8 diets until 42 d of age: positive control (PC) diet satisfying recommended level of all nutrients, negative control (NC) diet formulated to contain 0.16% lower non-phytate P than PC diet, and six other diets, formulated by replacing maize in NC diet with BU or GBU at 10%, 15% and 20% concentrations. Starter diets contained 23.5% crude protein (CP) and 3,200 kcal of ME/kg, and were used for 8-21 d of age. Then, grower diets with 20.5% CP and 3,250 kcal of ME/kg, and were provided for 22-42 d of age. Compared with the PC group, NC group showed impaired growth performance (BW gain, FI, and FCR), and bone quality (dry weight, breaking strength and contents of ash and P in tibia). However, in most cases, these impairments were ameliorated dose-dependently by the addition of BU and GBU in diets, and the restoration magnitude was greater in GBU than in BU treatment. Total P excretion decreased in NC group and further decreased dose-dependently with increasing levels of BU and GBU. Except for the values in PC group, total P retention increased as the total P excretion decreased. In conclusion, dietary BU and GBU restored the growth performance and bone quality impaired by the P deficiency, and improved P retention in broilers, which suggested that buckwheat, especially when germinated, can be used as an alternative phytase source in broiler diets.
Autophagy, an intracellular bulk protein degradation system in skeletal muscle, is increased under catabolic conditions resulting in muscle atrophy. This study aimed to investigate the effects of insulin, insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I, and amino acids on autophagy (LC3-II content and expression of autophagy-related genes) in chick myotubes. Chick myotubes were incubated with insulin (1μg/ml), IGF-I (100ng/ml), and amino acids for 3 h. The LC3-II content, an index of autophagosome formation, and mRNA expression of LC3B and GABARAPL1 were significantly decreased by insulin. The LC3-II content, but not mRNA expression of autophagy-related genes, was also significantly decreased by IGF-I. The LC3-II content and LC3B mRNA level were also significantly decreased by amino acids. The mRNA expression of atrogin-1/MAFbx, a muscle-specific ubiquitin ligase, was also significantly decreased by insulin, IGF-I, and amino acids in chick myotubes. These results indicated that insulin, IGF-I, and amino acids regulate autophagy as well as the ubiquitin-proteasome proteolytic pathway in chick myotubes.
In the present study, the effects of dietary buckwheat on phytase activity in the digesta from different parts of the digestive tract, and ileal digestibility of nutrients were determined in broilers fed with buckwheat diets. Eighty male broilers (29-d-old) were divided into four groups (20 birds each), and were fed one of the following diets until they were 36-d-old: positive control (PC) diet formulated based on the NRC recommendations, negative control (NC) diet containing 0.15% lower non-phytate phosphorus (P) than that in the PC diet, and two other diets formulated by replacing corn in NC diet with either 20% non-germinated (BU) or germinated (GBU) buckwheat. At the age of 36 d, broilers were sacrificed to collect digesta from the crop, gizzard, duodenum, jejunum, ileum, and cecum. The activity of phytase was low in the PC and NC diets, which increased in the BU diet and increased further in the GBU diet. A similar trend was observed in the crop digesta; however, the phytase activity in the crop digesta of BU and GBU diets was marginally lower when compared with that in each diet. These values decreased sharply when the digesta moved to the gizzard, and then decreased gradually. The ileal digesta exhibited significantly low activity with negligible effect of dietary treatment. The result of two-way analysis of variance with germination and digestive tract parts as main factors showed that the effect of digestive tract parts and interaction between factors was significant on the phytase activity in digesta. The dietary BU and GBU did not affect the ileal crude protein digestibility; however, it increased the ileal phytate P digestibility. These results suggest that in broilers, the crop might be the primary site of phytate degradation by buckwheat phytase, and the buckwheat might have negligible adverse effect on ileal digestibility of nutrients.
The physiological functions of insulin-like growth factor-binding proteins (IGFBPs) in mammals have been evaluated in several studies. However, the physiological roles of IGFBPs in chickens have not yet been elucidated. In this study, we examined the effects of short-term (6 h) fasting and refeeding on the mRNA levels of IGFBPs in chick liver and brain. Eighteen 8-day-old chicks were weighed and allocated to three groups on the basis of body weight, and subjected to ad libitum feeding, 6 h of fasting, or 6 h of fasting followed by 6 h of refeeding. After the chicks were euthanized by decapitation, the liver and brain were excised, and the brain was dissected into six segments (telencephalon, optic lobes, cerebellum, rostral part of the brainstem, middle part of the brainstem, and caudal part of the brainstem). IGFBP mRNA levels were determined by qRT-PCR. Fasting significantly increased the mRNA levels of IGFBP-1 and -2 in the chick liver, and these changes were reversed by 6 h of refeeding. The mRNA levels of IGFBP-3 in the middle part of the brainstem and IGFBP-5 in the optic lobes were decreased by 6 h of fasting and were not reversed after 6 h of refeeding. These findings suggest that IGFBP-1 and -2 in the liver, IGFBP-3 in the middle part of the brainstem, and IGFBP-5 in the optic lobes may play physiological roles in response to short-term changes in the nutritional status of chicks.
The mutant plumage color “extended brown (EB)” of the blue-breasted quail was genetically investigated. Mating experiments revealed that the EB plumage is controlled by an autosomal, incompletely dominant allele, for which we propose the symbol Eb. The EB plumage is characterized by dark brown color, and homozygotes for this mutation generally showed darker pigmentation than the heterozygotes. DNA sequencing and PCR-RFLP analyses of the EB mutants showed a rigid association between the EB plumage and a G-to-A nucleotide substitution at position 274 in the melanocortin 1-receptor gene (MC1R), clearly indicating that MC1R is the candidate gene for the EB plumage color in the blue-breasted quail.
We investigated a reproductive flock of Zatorska geese. The birds were divided into four groups: three-year-old ganders (n = 10), and one-, two-, and three-year-old layers (n = 30). Mature feathers were collected from the birds between July and September (i.e., after breeding). Before collection, the feathers and down were evaluated to determine their maturity. The quantitative composition of each sample of feathers was evaluated manually. The evaluated quality traits of the feathers were turbidity of an aqueous extract, acidity, oxygen index number, and fat content. The data were analyzed using the SAS statistical package with multivariate analysis of variance for repeated measures.
The weight of feathers collected from all three gatherings was the highest for the three-year-old ganders. In subsequent gatherings, the weight of the collected feathers tended to increase. There was a statistically significant difference in down composition between the first and the subsequent two gatherings in all age-groups of geese. Neither the age nor the gender of the birds had an effect on the quantity of down obtained, which was 80-85g.
The turbidity of the feather extract was lowest for feathers collected in the first gathering. For the layers, the turbidity of the feather extract was lowest in feathers obtained from the one-year-old birds. The feathers ranged from slightly acidic to neutral, with pH values between 5.9 and 7.2. The fat content was lowest in feathers collected in the first gathering (2.4-2.7%), and tended to increase in subsequent gatherings. There was no statistically significant difference in the oxygen index number between individual gatherings, or between the three-years-old layers and the ganders.
In Japan, the majority of chicken meat is obtained from fast-growing broiler chickens. Because most Japanese chicken breeds have a low meat yield and egg production, many of these breeds are endangered. Recently, the palatability of meat and eggs of native chickens has been reevaluated in the Japanese market. Jidori, which means chicken from the local, is an indigenous local chicken that is more delicious, firmer in texture, and more expensive than the broiler chickens. Most Japanese consumers recognize that the meat of Jidori chicken is richer in flavor than that of the broiler chicken. However, the reason for this rich flavor of the meat of Jidori chicken has not been elucidated. Recently, we found that arachidonic acid (AA) (C20:4n-6), a polyunsaturated fatty acid, is associated with the rich flavor of the meat and eggs of Jidori chicken. The present paper summarizes the discovery of the involvement of AA in the flavor characteristic of the meat and eggs of chicken, and also the genetic regulation of the AA content in the meat and eggs of Jidori chicken.
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of synbiotic supplementation, a potential alternative to antibiotic supplementation, on growth performance, carcass characteristics, meat quality, immunity, and oxidative status of Cherry Valley ducks. In total, 540 1-day-old male Cherry Valley ducks were randomly subjected to 3 treatments, and each treatment group consisted of 6 replicates with 30 birds each. Birds in the 3 treatments were fed a basal diet devoid of antibiotics (control group) or a basal diet supplemented with either 40mg/kg zinc bacitracin or 1.5g/kg synbiotic composed of xylooligosaccharide, Clostridium butyricum, and Bacillus subtilis for 42 days. Compared with the control group, dietary synbiotic and antibiotic supplementation decreased the feed/gain ratio of ducks (P = 0.025) to a similar extent (P > 0.05). Birds in the antibiotic group exhibited lower average daily feed intake (P = 0.024) whereas such an effect was not observed in the birds of the synbiotic group (P > 0.05). Synbiotic and antibiotic supplementation reduced abdominal fat yield (P = 0.032) and drip loss of the breast muscle (P < 0.001) to similar extents (P > 0.05). Additionally, synbiotic and antibiotic supplementation increased the relative weight of the bursa (P = 0.005) and total superoxide dismutase activity in the ileal mucosa (P = 0.025) to similar extents (P > 0.05). Moreover, ileal malondialdehyde accumulation was reduced with the supplementation of synbiotic (P = 0.028), but not antibiotic. The results indicated that dietary synbiotic supplementation was beneficial for growth performance, carcass compositions, meat quality, immune function, and antioxidant capacity of Cherry Valley ducks, and it could be used as an alternative to antibiotics in Cherry Valley ducks.
Calpain 3 (CAPN3), also known as p94, is associated with multiple production traits in domestic animals. However, the molecular characteristics of the CAPN3 gene and its expression profile in goose tissues have not been reported. In this study, CAPN3 cDNA of the Sichuan white goose was cloned, sequenced, and characterized. The CAPN3 full-length cDNA sequence consists of a 2,316-bp coding sequence (CDS) that encodes 771 amino acids with a molecular mass of 89,019kDa. The protein was predicted to have no signal peptide, but several N-glycosylation, O-glycosylation, and phosphorylation sites. The secondary structure of CAPN3 was predicted to be 38.65% α-helical. Sequence alignment showed that CAPN3 of Sichuan white goose shared more than 90% amino acid sequence similarity with those of Japanese quail, turkey, helmeted guineafowl, duck, pigeon, and chicken. Phylogenetic tree analysis showed that goose CAPN3 has a close genetic relationship and small evolutionary distance with those of the birds. qRT-PCR analysis showed that in 15-day-old animals, the expression level of CAPN3 was significantly higher in breast muscle than in thigh tissues. These results serve as a foundation for further investigations of the function of the goose CAPN3 gene.
The aim of this study was to optimize and characterize Flavourzyme hydrolysis conditions for the preparation of antioxidant peptides from duck meat, using response surface methodology. The results indicated that optimal Flavourzyme hydrolysis conditions for preparation of antioxidant peptides from duck protein were a temperature of 50.19°C, pH 5.45, and a reaction time of 1.03 h. Compared to non-hydrolyzed duck meat, Flavourzyme hydrolysis significantly improved the hydroxyl-radical scavenging, DPPH radical-scavenging, ferrous ion-chelating, reducing, and ABTS radical cation-scavenging activities of duck meat. Therefore, Flavourzyme can be regarded as an effective hydrolytic enzyme for the preparation of antioxidant peptides from duck meat.
Mitochondrial content is regarded a useful feature to distinguish muscle-fiber types in terms of energy metabolism in skeletal muscles. Increasing evidence suggests that specific mitochondrial bioenergetic phenotypes exist in metabolically different muscle fibers. A few studies have examined the energetic properties of skeletal muscle in domestic fowls; however, no information on muscle bioenergetics in broiler chickens selectively bred for faster growth is available. In this study, we aimed to characterize the mitochondrial contents and functions of chicken skeletal muscle consisting entirely of type I (oxidative) (M. pubo-ischio-femoralis pars medialis), type IIA (glycolytic/oxidative) (M. pubo-ischio-femoralis pars lateralis), and type IIB (glycolytic) (M. pectoralis superficialis) muscle fibers. Citrate synthase (CS) activity was the highest in type IIA muscle tissues and isolated mitochondria, among the muscle tissues tested. Although no difference was registered in mitochondrial CS activity between type IIB and type I muscles, tissue CS activity was significantly higher in the latter. Histochemical staining for NADH tetrazolium reductase and the ratio of muscle-tissue to mitochondrial CS activity indicated that type I, type IIA, and type IIB muscle-fiber types showed decreasing mitochondrial content. Mitochondria from type I muscle exhibited a higher coupled respiration rate induced by pyruvate/malate, palmitoyl-CoA/malate, and palmitoyl-carnitine, as respiratory substrates, than type IIB-muscle mitochondria, while the response of mitochondria from type IIA muscle to those substrates was comparable to that of mitochondria from type I muscle. Type IIA-muscle mitochondria exhibited the highest carnitine palmitoyltransferase-2 level among all tissues tested, which may contribute to the higher fatty acid oxidation in these mitochondria. The results suggest that mitochondrial abundance is one of the features differentiating metabolic characteristics of different chicken skeletal muscle types. Moreover, the study demonstrated that type IIA-muscle mitochondria may have distinct metabolic capacities.
Glucagon-like peptide (GLP)-1 is released from the intestinal L cells in response to food ingestion and stimulates insulin secretion from the pancreatic B cells, by binding to its specific receptor (GLP-1R), which is expressed on the pancreatic B cells in the mammalian pancreas. Previously, we demonstrated that chicken GLP-1R was expressed on the pancreatic D cells by using a specific antibody against chicken GLP-1R. In the present study, we compared the localization of GLP-1R in the pancreases of three avian species; white leghorn chicken, northern bobwhite, and common ostrich, using the double immunofluorescence technique. We found that the types of pancreatic islets in the northern bobwhite pancreas were similar to those found in the chicken pancreas. The ostrich pancreas contained several types of pancreatic islets. GLP-1R-immunoreactive cells were found in all types of pancreatic islets in both northern bobwhite and ostrich and expressed somatostatin immunoreactivity. The present results indicate that pancreatic D cells are the target cells of GLP-1, and GLP-1 might play a physiological role via somatostatin in the avian species.
Bitterness is one of the five basic tastes, and sensitivity to bitterness is important in that it enables animals to avoid harmful and toxic substances. In humans, taste sensitivity decreases with age, although the extent of loss varies depending on the taste quality. In chickens (Gallus gallus domesticus), baby chicks have been found to be more sensitive to salt and sour taste qualities than adults. In this study, therefore, we investigated the growth-associated changes in bitter taste sensitivity in chicks. We examined the behavioral perceptions toward the bitter compounds chloramphenicol and andrographolide in chicks at three different growth stages. Then, we measured the relative expression of the functional bitter taste receptors in the chick palate. In behavioral drinking tests, the 0-1-week-old chicks consumed a significantly lower amount of bitter solutions than water, whereas the 8-9-week-old chicks showed lower avoidance of the bitter solutions than the 0-1-week-old and 4-5-week-old chicks. Real-time PCR assay showed that the 0-1-week-old chicks had significantly higher expression of one of the functional bitter taste receptors in the palate than that in the older chicks. These results suggest that baby chicks are more sensitive to bitterness than older chicks. These findings may be useful in the production of new feedstuff for chicks according to their growth stages.
This study aimed to evaluate the effects of dietary supplementation of lysolecithin emulsifier on growth performance, nutrient digestibility, and blood lipid profiles in growing broiler chickens. In total, 1,020 1-day-old male Ross 308 broiler chickens with an average initial live weight of 43 ± 1.2 g were randomly allotted to five dietary treatments for a 35 d experiment. The treatments included: (1) NC, negative control (metabolizable energy (ME) = 3,100 kcal/kg for phase 1 and phase 2), (2) PC, positive control (ME = 3,200 kcal/kg), (3) T1, NC + 0.03% lysolecithin, (4) T2, NC + 0.06% lysolecithin, and (5) T3, NC + 0.09% lysolecithin. During days 1-35, the feed conversion ratios (FCR) of broiler chickens fed with T2 and T3 diets were lower than those of broiler chickens fed with NC diet (P < 0.05). On day 35, the total tract nutrient retention (TTNR) of gross energy and ether extract of broiler chickens fed with PC and T3 diets was higher than those fed with NC diet (P < 0.05). However, serum total cholesterol, triglyceride, and free fatty acid levels were not influenced by lysolecithin supplementation. In conclusion, lysolecithin supplementation improved FCR and TTNR of energy and ether extract when broiler chickens were offered a reduced energy diet.
To date, few reports have been published on the sensitivity of birds to sweet tastes. Therefore, in this study, the behavioral responses of White Leghorn chicks to the sweet taste of saccharin and the bitter taste of quinine were assessed. Three chicks were provided with a solution of 3.0 mM quinine and a mixture of 3.0 mM quinine mixed with 0.1, 0.5, 1.0, or 10.0 mM saccharin in a two-bottle choice test for 48 h. It was found that the chicks consumed more of the 0.5 mM saccharin/3.0 mM quinine mixture but significantly less of the 10.0 mM saccharin/3.0 mM quinine mixtures than the quinine solution alone (P < 0.05). The aversive behavior of 3.0 mM quinine solution was eased when mixed with 0.5 mM saccharin, indicating that chicks are detecting the sweetness associated with the 0.5 mM saccharin. The aversion to the 1.0 and 10.0 mM saccharin solutions might be stronger than to the 3.0 mM quinine solution alone. These findings suggest that chicks are able to detect this artificial sweetener.