Journal of Applied Phycology

, Volume 12, Issue 3–5, pp 325–330 | Cite as

Chickens fed with biomass of the red microalga Porphyridium sp. have reduced blood cholesterol level and modified fatty acid composition in egg yolk

  • Ariel Ginzberg
  • Merav Cohen
  • Uriel A. Sod-Moriah
  • Shraga Shany
  • Avi Rosenshtrauch
  • Shoshana (Malis) Arad

Abstract

The biomass of the red alga Porphyridium sp.constitutes a unique combination of soluble sulfatedpolysaccharide that accounts for about 70% of thealgal dry weight, and various polyunsaturatedfatty acids (PUFA) such as arachidonic andeicosapentaenoic acid (AA, 20:4 ω6 and EPA,20:5 ω3). In view of earlier results in ourlaboratory showing a reduction in serum cholesteroland triglyceride levels in rodents fed with red algalbiomass, we set out to examine the influence of algalbiomass as a feed additive on the metabolism ofchickens, with an emphasis on blood and eggcholesterol levels. For that purpose, lyophilizedalgal biomass was fed to 12–13, 30-week-old, WhiteLeghorn chickens for 10 days at a proportion of 5% or10% of the standard chicken diet. Twelve chickensfed with unsupplemented diet served as the control. No differences in body weight, egg number, and eggweight were found between the algal-fed chickens (atboth concentrations) and the control. However,chickens fed with algal biomass consumed 10% lessfood for both groups, and their serum cholesterollevels were significantly lower (by 11% and 28% forthe groups fed with 5% and 10% supplement,respectively) as compared with the respective valuesof the control group. Egg yolk of chickens fed withalgae tended to have reduced cholesterol levels (by10%) and increased linoleic acid and arachidonic acidlevels (by 29% and 24%, respectively). In addition,the color of the egg yolk was darker as a result ofthe higher carotenoid levels (2.4 fold higher) forchickens that fed with 5% supplement. Theseresults encourage the development of an improvedchicken feed having dietary fibers and polyunsaturatedfatty acids.

red microalga Porphyridium sp. algal biomass feeding chickens polyunsaturated fatty acids egg yolk cholesterol triglycerides 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ariel Ginzberg
    • 1
  • Merav Cohen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Uriel A. Sod-Moriah
    • 2
  • Shraga Shany
    • 3
  • Avi Rosenshtrauch
    • 2
  • Shoshana (Malis) Arad
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.The Institute for Applied BiosciencesBen-Gurion University of the NegevBeer-ShevaIsrael
  2. 2.Department of Life SciencesBen-Gurion University of the NegevBeer-ShevaIsrael
  3. 3.Faculty of Health SciencesBen-Gurion University of the NegevBeer-ShevaIsrael

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