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Ochratoxicosis in White Leghorn breeder hens: Production and breeding performance
Zahoor Ul Hassan*, Muhammad Zargham Khan, Ahrar Khan, Ijaz Javed1, Umer Sadique2 and Aisha Khatoon
Department of Pathology; 1Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Agriculture Faisalabad-38040; 2Department of Animal Health, KPK Agricultural University Peshawar-25120, Pakistan
*Corresponding author:


This study was designed to evaluate the effect of Ochratoxin A (OTA) upon production and breeding parameters in White Leghorn (WL) breeder hens. For this purpose, 84 WL breeder hens were divided into seven groups (A-G). The hens in these groups were maintained on fed contaminated with OTA @ 0.0 (control), 0.1, 0.5, 1.0, 3.0, 5.0 and 10.0 mg/Kg, respectively for 21 days. These hens were artificially inseminated with semen obtained from healthy roosters kept on OTA free feed. Egg production and their quality parameters were recorded. Fertile eggs obtained from each group were set for incubation on weekly basis. At the end of the experiment, hens in each group were killed to determined gross and microscopic lesions in different organs. OTA residue concentrations were determined in extracts of liver, kidneys and breast muscles by immunoaffinity column elution and HPLC-Fluorescent detection techniques.  Feeing OTA contaminated diet resulted in a significant decrease in egg mass and egg quality parameters. Liver and kidneys showed characteristic lesions of ochratoxicosis. Residue concentration (ng/g) of OTA in the hens fed 10 mg/kg OTA, was highest in liver (26.336±1.16) followed by kidney (8.223±0.85) and were least in breast muscles (1.235±0.21). Embryonic mortalites were higher, while hatachabilites of the chicks were lower in the groups fed higher doses of OTA. Feeding OTA contaminated diets to breeder hen resulted in residues accumulation in their tissues along with significantly reduced production and breeding performance.

Key words: Breeding performance, Egg production, Histopathology, Ochratoxicosis, White Leghorn breeder hens


ISSN 0253-8318 (Print)
ISSN 2074-7764 (Online)