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Technology and Poultry Welfare
Open AccessCommunication

Evidence for the Association of a Deleted Variant in the 5′-Flanking Region of the Chicken serotonin transporter (5-HTT) Gene with a Temporary Increase in Feed Intake and Growth Rate

Institute of Animal Welfare and Animal Husbandry, Friedrich-Loeffler-Institut, Dörnbergstraße 25/27, Celle 29223, Germany
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Academic Editor: Clive J. C. Phillips
Animals 2016, 6(10), 63; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani6100063
Received: 27 July 2016 / Revised: 13 September 2016 / Accepted: 10 October 2016 / Published: 14 October 2016
The serotonergic system has been shown to be implicated in the regulation ofmood and feeding behavior. Previous studies have identified a polymorphism in the 5′-flankingregion of the serotonin transporter (5-HTT) gene of Lohmann Brown (LB) laying hens. In this study, theimpact of three genotypes (W/W, W/D, and D/D) at the 5-HTT gene on feed intake and body weightwas investigated. After hatching, hens of the three genotypes were kept under ad libitum feedingconditions, and their feed intake and body weight were recorded weekly. From 5 weeks of age, D/Dand W/D hens were significantly heavier than wild-type W/W hens. Further, it is found that D/Dhens had a temporarily higher feed intake and growth rate than W/W hens between 4 and 7 weeks.We suggest that the increased body weight is due to a transiently increased appetite of D/D hens.
The serotonergic system has been shown to be implicated in the regulation of mood and feeding behavior. Previous studies have identified a polymorphism in the 5′-flanking region of the serotonin transporter ( 5 - HTT ) gene of Lohmann Brown (LB) laying hens. The deleted variant D was found to be associated with increased body weight. The objective of this study was to address whether the increased body weight may be due to an increased feed intake. After hatching, hens were kept under ad libitum feeding conditions, and their body weight and feed intake were weekly determined. From 5 weeks of age, the body weight of hens with the D/D and W/D genotypes was significantly greater than that of W/W carrying hens. Interestingly, we found that the feed intake of D/D carrying hens, relative to body weight, was transiently increased only between 4 and 7 weeks of age ( p < 0.05), leading to a higher growth rate ( p < 0.05), compared with that of W/W carrying hens. These results suggest that the presence of variant D may be correlated with a transiently increased appetite of D/D carrying hens. View Full-Text
Keywords: appetite; feed intake; body weight; chicken 5′-HTT; ghrelin appetite; feed intake; body weight; chicken 5′-HTT; ghrelin
MDPI and ACS Style

Kjaer, J.B.; Phi-van, L. Evidence for the Association of a Deleted Variant in the 5′-Flanking Region of the Chicken serotonin transporter (5-HTT) Gene with a Temporary Increase in Feed Intake and Growth Rate. Animals 2016, 6, 63.

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