V. Bunduc

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V. Bunduc, Rodica Diana Criste, Tatiana Dumitra Panaite, Iulia Varzaru, C. Panaite, M. Pop

   The lipid matrix of the egg is a food source in which lutein and zeaxanthin have a higher bioavailability than from the vegetal sources. Within this context, we conducted a 6-week trial on 19,500 TETRA layers, which aimed to enhance the lutein concentration in the yolk by feeding natural (corn gluten and alfalfa) and commercial sources of lutein to the layers. The layers were assigned to 3 groups (C, E1 and E2) and reared in modernized production halls. The basal diet was similar for all three groups (17.96% CP and 2724.31 kcal ME /kg). Compared to the diet for group C, the diet formulation for group E1 also included 5% alfalfa hay and 5% corn gluten. The diet formulation for group E2 included 25% commercial lutein powder (10%). Every day during the first week and every 2 days, afterwards, eggs were sampled and assayed for lutein concentration in the fresh yolk. Lutein concentration in the yolk increased during the experiment only in the yolk of the eggs from the experimental groups: 2.09 times (E1) and 2.89 times (E2). The higher lutein concentration in the yolk from the experimental groups compared to groups C was obvious from the second day of experiment: 12,777ppm (C), 17,636 ppm (E1) and 21,487 ppm (E2). No increase was determined in group C. There was a very high correlation (R2=0.9226) between lutein concentration in the compound feed and its concentration in the yolk.

Key words: layers, yolk, lutein, sources