Necrotic enteritis (NE) is the most common and financially devastating bacterial disease in modern broiler flocks. The sub-clinical form of the disease is far more common than clinical outbreaks. Disease prevalence has dramatically increased following the ban of in-feed antimicrobial growth promoters. The damage due to this hidden condition has been estimated as £ 1.2 billion per year in the world’s poultry industry
Causative Clostridium perfringens is an inhabitant of the caecal flora of poultry. Dietary protein supply has an effect on the proliferation C.perfringens when the birds are orally dosed with pathogenic bacteria. However the effect of dietary protein on the development of the sub-clinical NE in practical conditions is not clearly understood. Therefore the broiler production industry should understand the effect of dietary protein on sub-clinical NE and allow it to formulate effective diets that minimise the disease consequences.
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