Springer Nature is making SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19 research free. View research | View latest news | Sign up for updates

Ameliorative effect of synthetic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) on performance traits, antioxidant status and immune response in broiler exposed to cyclic heat stress

  • 410 Accesses

  • 26 Citations


The aim of this study was to find the effect of synthetic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) on the performance, antioxidant status, and immune response in broiler exposed to summer stress. A total of 400-day-old male broiler chickens (Ross 308) was randomly distributed into five treatments (5 replicates). One group served as a control (basal diet only) while the others were supplemented with GABA at the rate of 25 (GABA-25), 50 (GABA 50), 75 (GABA-75), and 100 (GABA-100) mg/kg feed. The experiment was continued for 35 days. Feed intake during the third week was significantly higher (P < 0.05) in GABA-75 and GABA-100, however, it increased significantly (P < 0.05) in GABA-100 during the fourth and fifth week. Overall mean feed intake was significantly (P < 0.05) high in GABA-75 and GABA-100. From the results, we found that body weight improved significantly (P < 0.05) in GABA-50 in week-3. During the fourth, fifth, and overall, body weight increased significantly (P < 0.05) in GABA-100. Significantly, high (P < 0.05) feed conversion ratio (FCR) was found in GABA-100 during the third, fourth, fifth, and on an overall basis. Mean Malondialdehyde (MDA) decreased significantly (P < 0.05) in GABA-100 while Paraoxonase (PON1) and Newcastle disease (ND) titer increased significantly (P < 0.05) in the same group. We concluded that performance traits, antioxidant status, and immune response improved in broiler supplemented 100 mg/kg GABA, exposed to cyclic heat stress.

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Abdou AM, Higashiguchi S, Horie K, Kim M, Hatta H, Yokogoshi H (2006) Relaxation and immunity enhancement effects of g-aminobutyric acid (GABA) administration in humans. Biofactors 26:201–208

  2. Alexander DJ, Chettle NJ (1997) Procedures for haemagglutination and the haemagglutination inhibition tests for avian infectious bronchitis virus. Avian Pathol 6:9--17

  3. Chand N, Naz S, Khan A, Khan S, Khan RU (2014) Performance traits and immune response of broiler chicks treated with zinc and ascorbic acid supplementation during cyclic heat stress. Int J Biometeorol 58:2153–2157

  4. Chen Z, Tang J, Sun YQ, Xie J (2013) Protective effect of γ-aminobutyric acid on antioxidation function. J Anim Plant Sci 23:1634–1641

  5. Chen Z, Xie J, Wang B, Tang J (2014) Effect of γ-aminobutyric acid on digestive enzymes, absorption function and immune function of intestinal mucosa in heat-stressed chicken. Poult Sci 93:2490–2500

  6. Cherubini E, Gaiarsa JL, Ben-Ari Y (1991) GABA: an excitatory transmitter in early postnatal life. Trends Neurosciience 12:515–519

  7. Dai SF, Gao F, Zhang WH, Song SX, XL X, Zhou GH (2011) Effects of dietary glutamine and gamma-aminobutyric acid on performance, carcass characteristics and serum parameters in broilers under circular heat stress. Anim Feed Sci Technol 168:51–60

  8. Dai SF, Gao F, XL X, Zhang WH, Song SX, Zhou GH (2012) Effects of dietary glutamine and c-aminobutyric acid on meat colour, pH, composition, and water-holding characteristic in broilers under cyclic heat stress. Br Poult Sci 53:471–481

  9. Dhama K, Latheef SK, Mani S, Abdul Samad H, Karthik K, Tiwari R, Khan RU, Alagawany M, Farag MR, Alam GM, Laudadio V, Tufarelli V (2015) Multiple beneficial applications and modes of action of herbs in poultry health and production—a review. Int J Pharmacol 11:152–176

  10. Hu H, Bai X, Shah AA, Wen AY, Hua JL, Che CY, He SJ, Jiang JP, Cai ZH, Dai SF (2015) Dietary supplementation with glutamine and γ-aminobutyric acid improves growth performance and serum parameters in 22 to 35-day-old broilers exposed to hot environment. J Anim Physiol Anim Nutr. doi:10.1111/jpn.12346

  11. Jha SK, Islam F, Mallick BN (2001) GABA exerts opposite influence on warm GABA exerts opposite influence on warm and cold sensitive neurons in medial preoptic area in rats. J Neurobiol 48:291–300

  12. Jonaidi H, Noori Z (2012) Neuropeptide Y-induced feeding is dependent on GABAA receptors in neonatal chicks. J Comp Physiol A 198:827–832

  13. Kato S, Araki H, Kawauchi S (2001) Body temperature dependence in baclofen-induced gastric acid secretion in rats relation to capsaicin sensitive affront neurons. Life Sci 68:1951–1963

  14. Khan RU, Naz S, Nikousefat Z, Tufarelli V, Javadani M, Rana N, Laudadio V (2011) Effect of vitamin E in heat-stressed poultry. World Poultry Sci J 67(3):469–478

  15. Khan RU, Laudadio V, Tufarelli V (2012a) Semen traits and seminal plasma biochemical parameters in white leghorn layer breeders. Rep Dom Anim 37:190–195

  16. Khan RU, Naz S, Nikousefat Z, Selvaggi M, Laudadio V, Tufarelli V (2012b) Effect of ascorbic acid in heat-stressed poultry. World Poultry Sci J 68(3):477–490

  17. Lin H, Jiao HC, Buyse J, Decuypere E (2005) Strategies for preventing heat stress in poultry. World’s Poult Sci J 62:71–86

  18. Mackness MI, Arrol S, Durrington PN (1991) Paraoxonase prevents accumulation of lipoperoxides in low-density lipoprotein. FEBS Lett 286:152–154

  19. Mashaly MM, Hendricks Rd GL, Kalama MA, Gehad AE, Abbas AO, Patterson PH (2004) Effect of heat stress on production parameters and immune responses of commercial laying hens. Poult Sci 83:889–894

  20. NRC (1994) Nutrient requirements of poultry, 9th edn. National Academy Press, Washington, DC

  21. Ohkawa H, Ohishi NY, Yagi K (1979) Assay for lipid peroxides in animal tissues by thiobarbituric acid reaction. Ann Bioch 95(2):351–358

  22. SAS Institute (1988) SAS user’s guide: statistics. SAS Institute, Inc., Cary

  23. Steel RGD, Torrie JH (1981) Principles and procedures of statistics: a biometrical approach. McGraw-Hill, Singapore

  24. Wan-ying W, Xin-yan HOU, Feng-bin YAN, Gui-rong SUN, Ruili HAN, Kang X-t (2013) Effect of g-aminobutyric acid on growth performance and immune function in chicks under beak trimming stress. Anim Sci J 84:121–129

  25. Zhang C, Bosch MA, Ronnekleiv OK, Kelly MJ (2009) Gamma-aminobutyric acid B receptor mediated inhibition of gonadotropin-releasing hormone neurons is suppressed by kisspeptin-G protein-coupled receptor 54 signaling. Endocrinology 150:2388--2394

  26. Zhang M, Zou XT, Li H, Dong XY, Zhao W (2012) Effect of dietary gamma-aminobutyric acid on laying performance, egg quality, immune activity and endocrine hormone in heat-stressed Roman hens. Anim Sci J 83(2):141–147

  27. Zheng-sheng Z, Sun YJ, Ming HW, Da WD, Feng Q, Eel WB (2009) Effects of gamma aminobutyric acid and astragalus polysaccharide on the growth performance and immune function of broiler. J Anhui Agri Sci 37(19):8994–8995

  28. Zhu YZ, Cheng JL, Ren M, Yin L, Piao XS (2015) Effect of γ-aminobutyric acid-producing lactobacillus strain on laying performance, egg quality and serum enzyme activity in Hy-line Brown hens under heat stress. Asian-Aust. J Anim Sci 28:1006–1013

  29. Zulkifil I, Che Norma MT, Israf DA, Omar AR (2000) The effect of early age feed restriction on subsequent response to high environmental temperatures in female broiler chickens. Poult Sci 79:1401–1407

Download references


The authors extend their appreciation to the Deanship of Scientific Research at King Saud University for supporting this work through research group No RG-1436-021.

Author information

Correspondence to Rifat Ullah Khan.

Additional information

Responsible editor: Philippe Garrigues

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Chand, N., Muhammad, S., Khan, R.U. et al. Ameliorative effect of synthetic γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) on performance traits, antioxidant status and immune response in broiler exposed to cyclic heat stress. Environ Sci Pollut Res 23, 23930–23935 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11356-016-7604-2

Download citation


  • Broiler
  • Heat stress
  • Gamma aminobutyric acid
  • Performance
  • Immunity