Evaluation of Bacteriophage Supplementation on Growth Performance, Blood Characteristics, Relative Organ Weight, Breast Muscle Characteristics and Excreta Microbial Shedding in Broilers

  • Wang, J.P. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University) ;
  • Yan, L. (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University) ;
  • Lee, J.H. (CTC Bio.) ;
  • Kim, In Ho (Department of Animal Resource and Science, Dankook University)
  • Received : 2012.10.03
  • Accepted : 2012.12.18
  • Published : 2013.04.01


A total of 720 1-d-old male broilers (Arbor Acres) with the initial BW = $45{\pm}2$ g were used in a 32-d experiment. Birds were randomly allotted into 1 of 4 treatments according to a completely random block design. Dietary treatments included: i) CON (basal diet), ii) ANT (CON+0.5 g antibiotics/kg feed (bacitracin methylene disalicylate)), iii) BP1 (CON+0.25 bacteriophage/kg feed), and iv) BP2 (CON+0.5 g bacteriophage/kg feed). The BWG and FI were not affected by dietary treatments throughout the whole experiment, whereas BP2 treatment reduced (p<0.05) the feed conversion ratio compared with the CON treatment during 0 to 14 d. The birds fed bacteriophages at the level of 0.25 g/kg increased (p<0.05) the relative liver weight. The inclusion of antibiotic and bacteriophage significantly reduced (p<0.05) the Escherichia coli and Salmonella concentration in the excreta compared with the NC group. Broilers fed the BP2 treatment had higher (p<0.05) lactobacillus counts compared with those fed NC and PC treatments. In conclusion, dietary supplementation of 0.5 g/kg bacteriophages increased feed efficiency and liver weight without effects on the breast muscle properties; also pathogens were inhibited by addition of bacteriophages.


Bacteriophage;Broilers;Growth Performance;Microbiota;Organ Weight


  1. AOAC. 2000. Official methods of analysis. 17th ed. Assoc. Off. Anal. Chem., Gaithersburg, MD, USA.
  2. Atterbury, R. J., M. A. Van Bergen, F. Ortiz, M. A. Lovell, J. A. Harris, A. De Boer, J. A. Wagenaar, V. M. Allen and P. A. Barrow. 2007. Bacteriophage therapy to reduce Salmonella colonization of broiler chickens. Appl. Environ. Microbiol. 73:4543-4549.
  3. Eeckhaut, V., F. Van Immerseel, J. Dewulf, F. Pasmans, F. Haesebrouck, R. Ducatelle, C. M. Courtin, J. A. Delcour and W. F. Broeckaert. 2008. Arabinoxylooligosaccharides from wheat bran inhibit Salmonella colonization in broiler chickens. Poult. Sci. 87:2329-2334.
  4. Huff, W. E., G. R. Huff, N. C. Rath, J. M. Balog and A. M. Donoghue. 2002. Prevention of Escherichia coli infection in broiler chickens with a bacteriophage aerosol spray. Poult. Sci. 81:1486-1491.
  5. Huff, W. E, G. R. Huff, N. C. Rath, J. M. Balog and A. M. Donoghue. 2004. Therapeutic efficacy of bacteriophage and Baytril (enrofloxacin) individually and in combination to treat colibacillosis in broilers. Poult. Sci. 83:1944-1947.
  6. Insoft, R. M., I. R. Sanderson and W. A. Walker. 1996. Development of immune function in the intestine and its role in neonatal diseases. Pediatr. Clin. North Am. 43:551-571.
  7. Lee, N. and D. L. Harris. 2001. The effect of bacteriophage treatment as a preharvest intervention strategy to reduce the rapid dissemination of Salmonella typhimurium in pigs. Proc. Am. Assoc. Swine Vet. American Association of Swine Veterinarians (AASV), Perry, IA. pp. 555-557.
  8. NRC. 1994. Nutrient Requirements of Poultry. 9th rev. ed. Natl. Acad. Press, Washington, DC, USA.
  9. SAS. 1996. SAS User's Guide: Statistics. Version 7.0. SAS Institute, Cary, NC, USA.
  10. Twort, F. W. 1915. An investigation on the nature of the ultramicroscopic viruses. Lancet 186:1241-1243.
  11. Toro, H., S. B. Price, A. S. McKee, F. J. Hoerr, J. Krehling, M. Perdue and L. Bauermeister. 2005. Use of bacteriophages in combination with competitive exclusion to reduce Salmonella from infected chickens. Avian Dis. 49:118-24.
  12. Whichard, J. M., N. Sriranganathan and F. W. Pierson. 2003. Suppression of Salmonella growth by wild-type and large-plaque variants of bacteriophage Felix O1 in liquid culture and on chicken frankfurters. J. Food Prot. 66:220-225.
  13. Williams, C. H., D. J. David, and O. Iismaa. 1962. The determination of chromic oxide in faeces samples by atomic absorption spectrophotometery. J. Agric. Sci. 59:381-385.
  14. Zhao, P. Y., H. Y. Baek and I. H. Kim. 2012. Effects of bacteriophage supplementation on egg performance, egg quality, excreta microflora, and moisture content in laying hens. Asian-Aust. J. Anim. Sci. 25:1015-1020.

Cited by

  1. Alternatives to antibiotics for maximizing growth performance and feed efficiency in poultry: a review vol.18, pp.01, 2017,
  2. Therapeutic potential of phages in autoimmune liver diseases vol.192, pp.1, 2018,