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  • 1 Shahrekord University, Shahrekord, 88186-34141, Iran
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This study assessed the preventive effects of arginine (ARG) and guanidinoacetic acid (GAA) on the incidence of pulmonary hypertension syndrome (PHS) in broiler chickens. Four isoenergetic and isonitrogenous diets were prepared, including: (i) the control, (ii) the control supplemented with 1 g/kg ARG, (iii) the control supplemented with 1 g/kg GAA, and (iv) the control supplemented with 1.5 g/kg GAA. These diets were fed to broilers (Ross 308) from day 1 to 42 post-hatch. Criteria evaluated in the experiment were growth performance, carcass characteristics, serum and blood variables, lead-II electrocardiogram, and ET-1 and iNOS gene expression in heart and lungs. Mortality from PHS was recorded daily. The results showed that ARG and GAA supplements improved the feed conversion ratio (FCR) compared to the control (P < 0.05). Supplementation of ARG and GAA significantly (P < 0.05) increased serum nitric oxide (NO) concentration. ARG and GAA supplementation significantly reduced the haematocrit value and the heterophil to lymphocyte ratio in the blood. A significant (P < 0.05) decline in S-wave amplitude of the lead-II electrocardiogram, right to total ventricular weight ratio (RV:TV) and ascites mortality was observed by supplementing ARG or 1.5 g/kg GAA. Addition of ARG and GAA supplements did not significantly change ET-1 and iNOS gene expression in the heart and lung relative to the control. In conclusion, GAA supplementation at 1.5 g/kg had a potential to improve growth performance and could prevent PHS.

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