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In ovo probiotic injection linked to higher post-hatch performance

News   •   Sep 22, 2016 07:00 GMT

In ovo injection of GalliPro® Hatch — a new probiotic formulation for poultry — may help chicks get a healthier start in life, without affecting hatchability.

The formulation, marketed as GalliPro® Hatch, is based on a unique strain of Enterococcus faecium (M74). According to global product manager Mickaël Rouault, the goal of applying the product in ovo is to start colonizing the chick’s gut with beneficial bacteria before it hatches, potentially improving post-hatch performance.

At the 2016 Poultry Science Association meeting, researchers from Mississippi State University presented data from a study on the potential effect of GalliPro® Hatch on young chick viability when injected with commercial in ovo technology.

Positive effect on hatchability, viability

The study was conducted in 2,604 fertile hatching flocks from a 55-week-old broiler breeder flock. On Day 10, all infertile, cracked and contaminated eggs were removed.

On Day 18, one group of eggs was injected with a commercial Marek’s disease vaccine and another was injected with both the vaccine and GalliPro® Hatch. The in ovo injections were with a commercial technology according to manufacturer’s instructions.

Results indicate that in ovo injection of GalliPro® Hatch has no negative effects on chick viability and may even be beneficial. Compared to the vaccine group, the vaccine + GalliPro® Hatch group had fewer late-dead mortalities before hatch and lower mortality 0-7 days post hatch. Chicks that received GalliPro® Hatch also had numerically higher average weights at hatch than those that received the vaccine alone.

Every day counts

Based on the results, investigators concluded that in ovo injection of GalliPro® Hatch is not harmful to chicks and may improve post-hatch performance.

“Unlike many other probiotic strains, which can be harmful when applied in ovo, the E. faecium strain in GalliPro® Hatch has been shown to be safe for in ovo injection and embryonic development, while being compatible with simultaneous vaccination for Marek’s disease,” Rouault says.

The ability to administer a probiotic in ovo has many potential benefits, he adds.

“Given the relatively short production cycle of broilers, every day counts, so a healthy start to life is critical,” he says.

“By promoting intestinal integrity and function, the E. faecium strain in GalliPro® Hatch helps improve nutrient uptake while keeping pathogens in check. The trend toward lower mortalities and higher weights observed in the E. faecium group are consistent with these benefits. Improved livability in the first week of life sets chicks up for improved economic results at market.”

For more information on Chr. Hansen's probiotic products for poultry, click here.