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Assessing the Ameliorating Effects of Adsorbents on the Health and Performance of Ducklings fed mold (Fungal) Contaminated Diets

Author(s): Anthony C Mgbeahuruike, Ifeoma Emmanuela Nwoko, Chinyere T Nwaoga, Onyinye Okorie-Kanu


Adsorbents are important feed additives for aflatoxin detoxification in feeds. The study investigated the efficacy of locally available adsorbents in mycotoxin detoxification of duckling feed. Bentonite and fuller’s earth were added to aflatoxin contaminated duckling feeds and the level of decontamination of the feeds was measured using High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC). Hematological, serum biochemical and performance parameters of the ducklings were measured. Addition of bentonite resulted in 44% reduction of total aflatoxin levels in the feed while the fuller’s earth caused 59% reduction. Both adsorbents reduced the aflatoxin level below 20 μg/kg threshold recommended by the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA). The fuller’s earth resulted in 13% weight increase in the ducklings that ate the feed treated with adsorbent compared with the control that had no adsorbent treatment. There was increased white blood cell counts (WBC) in the group treated with bentonite (29%) compared with the untreated group. There was also 20% increase in pack cell volume (PCV) of the ducklings that were given the fuller’s earth treated feed compared with the untreated control. In the ducklings that ate the adsorbent treated feeds, the liver enzymes, increased from 27.9 to 62.0IU/L for Aspartate aminotransferase (AST), 20.5 to 55.7IU/L for Alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and 29.4 to 50.7IU/L for Alkaline phosphatase (ALP) respectively, while glutathione peroxidase was reduced from 106.0 to 42.2 IU/L by the fuller’s earth. In conclusion, the adsorbents caused a significant reduction of the aflatoxin concentration in the feed and positively improved the performance parameters of the ducklings. The two adsorbents (bentonite and fullers’ earth) are potential feed additives that can be incorporated in feed during production to reduce the adverse effects of mycotoxins in poultry.

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