Effects of Different Levels of Artichoke (Cynara scolymus) on Growth Performance and Immune Responses of Broilers underHeat Stress

Document Type : Research Article


Department of Physiology and Poultry Nutrition, Faculty of Animal Science, Gorgan University of Agricultural Science and Natural Resources, Gorgan, Iran


This experiment was undertaken to evaluate the effect of dietary level of artichoke (Cynara scolymus) on growth performance and immune response of broilers under heat stress (HS). Two hundred forty day-old broiler chicks (Ross, 308) were randomly assigned to one of four dietary treatments with four replicate pens per treatment (15 birds per pen) in a completely randomized design with a 2 × 4 factorial arrangement (4 treatment diets and 2 different temperatures rearing systems). Treatment diets were: 1) control diet, 2) and 3) control diet supplemented with 15 and 30 g artichoke, respectively and 4) control diet supplemented with 300 mg/kg vitamin E. Body weight (BW) and feed conversion ratio (FCR) were not influenced by dietary artichoke (P>0.05). In the case of sheep red blood cells (SRBC), there were no significant differences between treatments. However, the control group in HS condition showed lower titer for sheep red blood cells (SRBC)while group receiving 3 percent artichoke showed higher titer )P<0.05). There was no significant difference between treatments for Newcastle antibody titer. Regardinglymphoid organs, the weights of bourse and spleen were similar, while liver weight differed between treatments. In this regard, chicks under HS in the control group had lower weight than the other groups. Lymphoid organ weights and antibody responses were significantly reduced under HS. These results indicated that HS severely reduced growth performance and immune response of broilers, whereas the immune response of broilers could be improved by dietary artichoke supplementation under HS.


Austic R.E. (1985). Feeding poultry in hot and cold climates. CRC Press. Boca Raton. FL. 3, 23-126.
Bartlett J.R. and Smith M.O. (2003). Effects of different levels of zinc on the performance and immunocompetence of broiler under heat stress. Poult. Sci. 82, 1580-1588.
Colnago G.L., Jensen L.S. and Long P.L. (1984). Effects of selenium and vitamin E on the development of immunity to coccidiosis in chickens. Poult. Sci. 63, 1136-1143.
Dong X.F., Gao W.W., Tong J.M., Jia H.Q., Sa R.N. and Zhang Q. (2007). Effect of polysavone (Alfalfa extract) on abdominal fat deposition and immunity in broiler chickens. Poult. Sci. 86, 1955-1959.
Donker R.A., Nieuwland M.G.B. and van der Zijpp A.J. (1990). Heat-stress influences on antibody production in chicken lines selected for high and low immune responsiveness. Poult. Sci. 69, 599-607.
Ebrahimzadeh S.K., Farhoomand P. and Noori K. (2012). Immune response of broiler chickens level of chromium methionine under heat stress conditions. Asian-australs. J. Anim. Sci. 2, 256-260.
Geraert P.A., Padilha J.C.F. and Guillaumin S. (1996). Metabolic and endocrine changes induced by chronic heat exposure in broiler chickens: growth performance, body composition and energy retention. Br. J. Nutr. 75, 195-204.
Haghighi H.R., Gong J., Gyles C.E., Hayes M.A., Sanei B., Parvizi P., Gisavi H., Chambers J.R. and Sharif S. (2005). Modulation of antibody-mediated immune response by probiotics in chickens. Diag. Lab. Immun. 12, 1387-1392.
Kelley K.W. (1985). Immunological consequences of changing environmental stimuli. Physiol. Soc. 22, 195-223.
Miller L. and Qureshi M.A. (1991). Comparison of macrophage function in several commercial broiler genetic lines. Poult. Sci. 70, 1094-1101.
Pecht G. (1996). Natural substances for animal nutrition (II). Kraftfutter. 11, 523-526.
Pittler M.H., Thompson C.J. and Ernst E. (2005). Artichoke leaf extract for treating hypercholesterolaemia: a review. Cochrane Library. 18, 231-236.
Regnier J.A., Kelley K.W. and Gaskins C.T. (1980). Acute thermal stressors and synthesis of antibodies in chickens. Poult. Sci. 59, 985-990.
SAS Institute. (2003). SAS®/STAT Software, Release 9.1. SAS Institute, Inc., Cary, NC.
Schutz K., Kammerer D., Carie R. and Schieber A. (2004). Identification and quantification of caffeoylquinic acids and flavonoids from artichoke (Cyanara scolymus). J. Agric. Food Chem. 30, 4090-4096.
Seier L. and Bragg D.B. (1993). Influence of dietary vitamin E and antioxidant on the response to dietary selenium by the chick and the biological activity of selenium in feed grain. J. Anim. Sci. 53, 371-375.
Siegel H.S. (1987). Effects of behavioral and physical stressors on immune responses. Biol. Stress. Farm. 23, 39-54.
Singh H., Sodhi S. and Kaur R. (2006). Effects of dietary supplements of selenium, vitamin E or combinations of the two on antibody response of broilers. Br. Poult. Sci. 47, 714-719.
Thaxton J.P., Sadler C.R. and Glick B. (1968). Immune response of chickens following heat exposure or injection with ACTH. Poult. Sci. 47, 264-266.
Thaxton J.P. and Siegel H.S. (1970). Immunodepression in young chickens by high environmental temperature. Poult. Sci. 49, 202-205.
Zulkifli I., Norma M.T., Israf D.A. and Omar A.R. (2000). The effect of early age feed restriction on subsequent response to high environmental temperatures in female broiler chickens. Poult. Sci. 79, 1401-1407.