The production capacity of hens has increased tremendously over the last 20 years with an average of 220 eggs per hen housed in 1960 to potentially 500 eggs in 100 weeks in 2019. Several organs are involved in enabling this long-term egg production process. The follicles produced in the ovary need to grow and ovulate to initiate egg production. The liver needs to supply the nutrients for proper follicle growth and liver fattening must be prevented to maintain liver health and function. Adipose tissue has an important role in maintaining the body energy balance and functions as a reservoir for fatty acids provided by the diet or produced by the liver. Additionally, recent literature in broiler breeders indicates adipokine (hormone) production of adipose tissue potentially mediates in ovulation. Feeding strategies are essential to support long-term egg production, but the interaction between the diet, body composition, liver metabolism and egg production needs to be understood further. This project therefore aims to understand how dietary amino acids and energy are deposited into body and egg and how this nutrient supply and storage influence body composition and metabolism to support long-term producing laying hens. It is hypothesized that energy and amino acid intake during the rearing and laying period influence fat deposition and that an optimal body condition is required for long-term egg production.
|Effective start/end date
|1/09/21 → …
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