Effects of Different Dietary Levels of Mannanoligosaccharide on Growth Performance and Gut Development of Broiler Chickens

  • Yang, Y. (School of Rural Science and Agriculture, University of New England) ;
  • Iji, P.A. (School of Rural Science and Agriculture, University of New England) ;
  • Choct, M. (Australian Poultry Science CRC)
  • Received : 2006.07.10
  • Accepted : 2007.01.03
  • Published : 2007.07.01


Different levels of dietary mannanoligosaccharide (Bio-MOS, Alltech Inc.) were evaluated for their efficacy on performance and gut development of broiler chickens during a 6-week experimental period. Experimental diets contained (g MOS/kg diet) a low (0.5 g during the entire period), medium (1 g during the entire period), high (2 g during the entire period), or step down (2 g in the first week; 1 g in the second and third week; 0.5 g in the last three weeks) level of MOS. Control diets included a negative and a positive control (zinc bacitracin, ZnB, 50 ppm and 30 ppm in the first and last three weeks, respectively). MOS supplementation improved the growth performance of young birds and the effects became less when the birds got older. The growth response of birds was more obvious at the high dosage level of MOS treatment than the other MOS treatments and the growth performance of birds fed on the high MOS diet was comparable to that of birds fed on the ZnB diet. Depending on the dosage level and the age of birds, MOS seemed to reduce the size of the liver and the relative length of the small intestine but did not affect the relative weight of the other visceral organs (proventriculus, gizzard, pancreas, bursa and spleen) and that of the small intestine. A numerical increase in the small intestine digestibility of nutrients was noticed in the young birds fed on the MOS diet(s), but not in the older ones. Medium and/or high MOS treatment also increased the villus height of the small intestine of birds at different ages. Similar results were observed on the ZnB treatment. However, MOS and ZnB affected caecal VFA profile in different ways. MOS increased, or tended to increase, whereas ZnB reduced individual VFA concentrations in the caeca.


Mannanoligosaccharide;Bio-MOS;Performance;Intestinal Digestibility of Nutrient;Gut Morphology;Cecal VFA Profile;Broiler Chickens


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