The effect of feeding a diet naturally contaminated with deoxynivalenol (DON) (0-21 days: 1.50 mg·kg-1; 22-39 days: 1.54 mg·kg-1) was studied in 40 broiler chickens. Birds were divided into two groups fed a control diet and a diet contaminated with DON (n = 20 in each). Feed intake was measured daily and individual live weight weekly; daily weight gain and feed to gain ratio were calculated. Five animals from each group were euthanized on days 21 and 39 when blood (blood plasma and red blood cell haemolysates) and liver samples were collected. Concentration of triglyceride, uric acid and glucose and activities of ALT, AST and LDH were measured in blood plasma. Indicators of lipid peroxide and glutathione redox status, malondialdehyde and reduced glutathione concentration and glutathione-peroxidase activity were measured in blood plasma, red blood cell haemolysates and liver homogenates. The low dose of DON did not cause difference in the production traits, but caused significantly lower concentration of uric acid and glucose, and significantly higher concentration of triglyceride in blood plasma on day 21. Enzyme activities in blood plasma did not differ significantly between the treatment groups. Among the markers of lipid peroxide and glutathione redox status, malondialdehyde content was significantly higher in liver homogenate on day 21 in the group fed with DON contaminated diet, but reduced glutathione content and glutathione peroxidase activity did not differ significantly between the treatment groups. The results showed that diet contaminated even with a low content of deoxynivalenol caused alterations in selected biochemical indicators of blood and liver of broiler chicken.
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