Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment

Vol 1, Issue 2,2003
Online ISSN: 1459-0263
Print ISSN: 1459-0255

Vitamin C and E can alleviate negative effects of heat stress in Japanese quails


Kazim Sahin 1*, Nurhan Sahin 2, Muhittin Onderci 3, Mehmet F. Gursu 4, Mustafa Issi 4

Recieved Date: 2002-09-03, Accepted Date: 2003-01-05


The present study investigates the effects of vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid) and E (α-tocopherol acetate) supplementation on egg production, egg quality, apparent digestibility, serum metabolites, and antioxidant status of Japanese quails (Coturnix coturnix japonica) exposed to a high ambient temperature (33 °C). One hundred and twenty laying Japanese quails (45-d-old) were divided into four groups, 30 birds per group. Quails were fed a basal diet or the basal diet supplemented with either 250 mg of L-ascorbic acid/kg of diet, 250 mg of α-tocopherol-acetate/kg of diet, or 250 mg of L-ascorbic acid plus 250 mg α-tocopherol-acetate/kg of diet. Separately or as a combination, supplemental vitamin C and E significantly increased live weight, feed intake and egg production (P < 0.05). Separately, dietary supplementation of vitamin C and E improved the egg quality, and the combination of vitamins C and E resulted in a greatest egg weight, specific gravity and Haugh unit value, thickest egg shell, and heaviest egg shell weight (P < 0.05). Apparent digestibility of nutrients (DM, OM, CP, and EE) was increased by supplementation of vitamin C and E (P < 0.05). Separately or as a combination, supplemental vitamin C and E increased serum concentration of total protein but decreased corticosterone, glucose, and cholesterol concentrations (P < 0.05). Supplemental vitamin C and E also increased serum vitamin C and E but decreased MDA (malondialdehyde) concentrations (P < 0.05). Results of the present study show that dietary supplementation of vitamin C and E, particularly as a combination, improved the performance, egg quality and antioxidant status of laying Japanese quails exposed to heat stress. Such a combination of supplement can offer a potential protective management practice in preventing heat stress-related losses in performance of laying Japanese quails.


Heat stress, vitamin C, vitamin E, egg, digestibility, MDA, quail

Journal: Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment
Year: 2003
Volume: 1
Issue: 2
Category: Agriculture
Pages: 244-249

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