Evaluation of increasing levels of a microbial phytase in phosphorus deficient broiler diets via live broiler performance, tibia bone ash, apparent metabolizable energy, and amino acid digestibility

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The objective was to investigate increasing concentrations of an evolved microbial phytase on male broiler performance, tibia bone ash, AME, and amino acid digestibility when fed diets deficient in available phosphorus (aP). Experiment 1 evaluated the effects of phytase during a 21 d battery cage study and Experiment 2 was a 42 d grow-out. Experiment 1 included six treatments; negative control (NC) with an aP level of 0.23% (starter) and 0.19% (grower), two positive controls (PC) consisting of an additional 0.12% and 0.22% aP (PC 1 and PC 2), and the NC supplemented with three levels of phytase (250, 500, and 2,000 U/kg). The NC diet reduced (P < 0.05) FC, BW, and bone ash. Phytase increased (P < 0.05) BW with 2,000 U/kg phytase yielding similar results to the PC2, and improved FCR and increased bone ash was observed at all phytase levels. Amino acid digestibility coefficients were increased (P < 0.05) with phytase at 250 U/kg. Phytase at all rates increased (P < 0.05) AME to levels similar level as PC diets. Linear regression analysis indicated average P equivalency values for BW and bone ash of 0.137, 0.147, and 0.226 for phytase inclusion of 250, 500, and 2000 U/kg, respectively. Experiment 2 included a PC consisting of 0.45%, 0.41%, and 0.38% aP for the starter, grower, and finisher, respectively; NC with reduced aP of 0.17%; and phytase at 500 and 2,000 U/kg. Phytase increased BW (P < 0.05) compared to the NC as 2,000 U/kg phytase resulted in further BW increases compared to the PC (starter and grower). Phytase improved FCR to levels comparable to the PC, with supplementation at 2,000 U/kg resulting in improvements beyond the PC in the starter phase. Amino acid digestibility coefficients were increased with phytase at 2,000 U/kg to levels comparable to that of the PC. These data confirm that the inclusion of phytase improves broiler performance and bone mineralization in aP reduced diets and levels beyond the traditional 500 U/kg can result in further improvements.

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