Effects of glycine and glutamine supplementation to reduced crude protein diets on growth performance and carcass characteristics of male broilers during a 41-day production period1

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Glycine has been reported to be conditionally essential for broilers fed reduced crude protein diets during the starter period. Research evaluating dietary Gly responses subsequent to the starter period is sparse. This experiment was conducted to ascertain the effects of feeding reduced crude protein diets supplemented with Gly and/or L-Gln (nitrogen source) on growth performance and carcass characteristics of broilers during a 41-day production period. Eight dietary treatments were utilized with the negative control diets formulated to contain approximately 2.4 and 0.29% points lower crude protein and total Gly + Ser concentrations, respectively, than the positive control diets. The 6 other diets were formulated to contain intermediate concentrations of total Gly + Ser and/or crude protein (nitrogen) by adding Gly and/or L-Gln, respectively, to the negative control diets. Glycine appeared to have more pronounced effects than nitrogen contribution on feed conversion ratio and body weight gain of broilers during starter and grower periods, whereas Gln improved feed conversion of broilers in the finisher period. Total breast meat weight and yield of broilers provided diets with the additions of Gly and L-Gln were higher than those receiving diets with only Gly or L-Gln supplementation. The positive outcomes on growth performance and carcass characteristics suggested that providing adequate total Gly + Ser and nitrogen concentrations in diet formulation may be necessary for broilers when dietary CP content was reduced approximately by 2.4% points during a 6-week production period.

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