A study of the employment of melatonin supplementation and darkness regime on reducing the negative effects of acute heat stress and mortality in broiler chickens

Document Type : Clinical Pathology


1 Department of Avian Diseases, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

2 Department of Basic Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran

3 Department of Animal Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, University of Guillan, Rasht, Iran

4 Institute for Agricultural Research of Iranian Organization for Sciences and Technology, Tehran, Iran


Background: Heat stress is one of the most important environmental stressors challenging poultry production worldwide. Understanding and controlling environmental stressors is crucial for successful poultry production. OBJECTIVES: The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of melatonin supplementation and darkness regime on reducing the negative effects of heat stress in broiler chickens. METHODS: A total of 400 broiler chickens (Arian) were obtained and subjected to four different groups. The control chickens were grown in normal conditions without receiving any treatment. The positive control birds were grown similar to the control but exposed to an acute heat stress for 6 h/d from days 35 to 40. The dark group chickens were reared under a dark schedule and exposed to heat stress. The birds of the fourth group were reared similar to the positive control but received 40 ppm melatonin in the diet from days 30 to 40 of age. Dead birds were autopsied. The weekly growth performance of chickens was determined and blood samples were taken for hormonal analysis. RESULTS: The number of dead birds due to heat stress was significantly decreased in chickens subjected to the dark program and/or those which received melatonin in the diet compared with those of positive control chickens. Such differences were accompanied with the significantly lower levels of plasma T3, T3/T4 and corticosterone in these groups of chickens. Additionally, plasma thiobarbituric acid reacting substances level was significantly higher in positive control broilers compared to their counterparts. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings indicate a reduction of metabolic rate and heat production in dark regime and melatonin supplementation that can reduce the side effects of heat stress and, therefore, reduce the mortality rate.


Article Title [Persian]

بررسی استفاده از ملاتونین خوراکی و تاریکی بر کاهش تلفات و عوارض ناشی از استرس حاد گرمایی در جوجه های گوشتی

Authors [Persian]

  • محمد حسن زاده 1
  • امیر احمد مقیمی نیاکی 1
  • وهاب باباپور 2
  • اردشیر محیط 3
  • سارا میرزایی 4
1 گروه بیماری های پرندگان، دانشکده دامپزشکی دانشگاه تهران، تهران، ایران
2 گروه علوم پایه، دانشکده دامپزشکی دانشگاه تهران، تهران، ایران
3 گروه علوم دامی، دانشکده کشاورزی دانشگاه گیلان، رشت، ایران
4 مرکز تحقیقات کشاورزی سازمان پژوهش های علمی و تکنولوژی ایران، تهران، ایران
Abstract [Persian]

زمینه مطالعه: استرس گرمایی از مهمترین استرسهای محیطی است که خسارت تأثیرگذاری در صنعت طیور ایجاد میکند. شناخت این استرس و کنترل آن تأثیر بسیار مهمی در تولید این صنعت خواهد داشت. هدف: تأثیر استفاده از ملاتونین خوراکی و رژیم تاریکی بر عوارض منفی ناشی از استرس گرمایی مورد برسی قرار میگیرد.  روش کار: 400 قطعه جوجه گوشتی نژاد آرین تهیه و به چهار گروه تقسیم و تا 42 روزگی نگهداری شدند. جوجههای گروه کنترل در کل دوره  از لحاظ دما و نور در شرایط عادی نگهداری شدند. در گروه کنترل مثبت، جوجههای آن تا 35 روزگی مانند گروه اول پرورش یافتند و بین 35 الی 40 روزگی، روزانه 6 ساعت در شرایط استرس حاد گرمایی قرار گرفتند. در گروه تاریکی، جوجهها ضمن تحمل استرس گرمایی مانند سایر گروهها، از یک مدل تاریکی استفاده کردند. در گروه ملاتونین، جوجهها همانند گروه کنترل مثبت پرورش یافته و بین 30 الی 40 روزگی ملاتونین خوراکی به میزان ppm‌40 در دان مصرف نمودند. جوجهها و غذای مصرفی آنها هفتگی توزین و تلفات روزانه کالبدگشایی و گزارش شد. از جوجهها خونگیری و غلظت هورمونهای خون آنها اندازه گیری شد. نتایج: استفاده از برنامة تاریکی و ملاتونین در دان سبب کاهش تعداد تلفات ناشی از استرس گرمایی گردید که این  کاهش تلفات به شکل معنیداری با کاهش غلظت T3، نسبت T4/T3 و کورتیکوسترون خون جوجهها همراه شد. ضمناً میزان TBARS خون جوجههای گروه کنترل مثبت هم به شکل معنیداری نسبت به گروههای دیگر بالاتر بود. نتیجه گیری نهایی: این آزمایش نشان داد که استفاده از ملاتونین خوراکی و تاریکی در پرورش جوجه سبب کاهش فعالیت متابولیک و تولید گرما در جوجههای گوشتی شده که این مسئله سبب کاهش تلفات و عوارض ناشی از استرس حاد گرمایی خواهد شد. 

Keywords [Persian]

  • جوجه گوشتی
  • کورتیکوسترون
  • استرس گرمایی
  • ملاتونین
  • T4/T3
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