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Poult Sci. 2010 Aug;89(8):1651-62. doi: 10.3382/ps.2010-00687.

Effect of inulin supplementation and dietary fat source on performance, blood serum metabolites, liver lipids, abdominal fat deposition, and tissue fatty acid composition in broiler chickens.

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Departamento de Producción Animal, Facultad de Veterinaria, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, 28040, Spain.


A study was conducted to evaluate the effect of adding inulin to diets containing 2 different types of fat as energy sources on performance, blood serum metabolites, liver lipids, and fatty acids of abdominal adipose tissue and breast and thigh meat. A total of 240 one-day-old female broiler chicks were randomly allocated into 1 of 6 treatments with 8 replicates per treatment and 5 chicks per pen. The experiment consisted of a 3 x 2 factorial arrangement of treatments including 3 concentrations of inulin (0, 5, and 10 g/kg of diet) and 2 types of fat [palm oil (PO) and sunflower oil (SO)] at an inclusion rate of 90 g/kg of diet. The experimental period lasted from 1 to 34 d. Dietary fat type did not affect BW gain but impaired feed conversion (P < 0.001) in birds fed the PO diets compared with birds fed the SO diets. The diets containing PO increased abdominal fat deposition and serum lipid and glucose concentrations. Triacylglycerol contents in liver were higher in the birds fed PO diets. Dietary fat type also modified fatty acids of abdominal and i.m. fat, resulting in a higher concentration of C16:0 and C18:1n-9 and a lower concentration of C18:2n-6 in the birds fed PO diets. The addition of inulin to diets modified (P = 0.017) BW gain quadratically without affecting feed conversion. Dietary inulin decreased the total lipid concentration in liver (P = 0.003) and that of triacylglycerols and very low density lipoprotein cholesterol (up to 31%) in blood serum compared with the control groups. The polyunsaturated fatty acid:saturated fatty acid ratio increased in abdominal and i.m. fat when inulin was included in the SO-containing diets. The results from the current study suggest that the addition of inulin to broiler diets has a beneficial effect on blood serum lipids by decreasing triacylglyceride concentrations The results also support the use of inulin to increase the capacity of SO for enhancing polyunsaturated fatty acid:saturated fatty acid ratio of i.m. fat in broilers.

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