Biochemical reference intervals in broiler chickens according to age and strain

N. Arzour-Lakehal*, A. Boudebza

PADESCA laboratory, Institute of Veterinary Sciences, road of Guelma 25100 El Khroub, University of Mentouri Brothers, Constantine 1, Algeria

(Manuscript received 20 April 2021; accepted for publication 8 October 2021)

Abstract. The objective of the research was to study the physiological pattern of biochemical variables and to obtain reference intervals for young (less than 1 month) and adult (more than 1 month) broiler chickens of 2 strains. From the jugular vein, blood for analysis was collected, separated, and then immediately analyzed. The influence of age was significant for the majority of the investigated variables in the 2 groups. In Isa15 strain, a significant age-related decrease in plasma uric acid, glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides, phosphorus, potassium and iron was established. Also, a significant age-related increase in plasma calcium and ASAT was obtained in the same broiler strain. In Arbor Acres Plus strain, a significant age-related decrease in plasma glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides and phosphorus was observed. A significant age-related increase in plasma total protein, calcium and ASAT has also been reported in this broiler strain. A significant difference between the two strains was reported for plasma uric acid, glucose, cholesterol, phosphorus, magnesium and iron (p<0.05). For most estimated parameters in the 2 strains, calculation of separate reference intervals for young and adult animals was appropriate. Except for potassium in young Isa15 strain, and phosphorus in young Arbor Acres Plus strain, all variables did not follow a normal distribution. Reference intervals are presented for both ages using non-parametric or robust method. 90% confidence intervals for both groups were calculated non-parametrically, or by the bootstraping method. The established reference intervals will be a useful guide for interpreting plasma biochemical variables in different strains of broiler chickens raised in Algeria, and reared in a mild Mediterranean climate.