Dietary Conjugated Linoleic Acid for Broiler Diets


Dietary Conjugated Linoleic Acid for Broiler Diets

Most broiler production research is focused on finding alternatives for drugs and vaccines frequently used for rearing. Use of natural food additives to improve the production performance i.e. meat production and nutritive value, and physiological status of birds, encouraging toxin-/chemical-free functional food production are getting common.

Due to low fat, sodium and cholesterol content, poultry meat is in high demand; therefore, any economical methods which increase broiler production and enhance meat quality are vital to this industry1.

Supplementation of poultry feed is one way to increase meat production and quality. Among the various chemical-free food additives is available, Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) has been most commonly used in poultry diets2. This is a polyunsaturated omega fatty acid with a conjugated double bond system that is important for regulating fatty acid metabolism and fat deposition in animals3.

It has been previously reported that addition of CLA to the diet improved growth performance and lipid metabolism in mice and pigs. Similarly, others have demonstrated that broilers fed a CLA-supplemented diet produced meat enriched with CLA4. Therefore, a new study was conducted in order to add CLA to broiler diets and to study its effect on productive performance and quality of meat5.

One-day-old Ross-308 chicks were randomly distributed into four dietary treatment groups: control A1, 0.5 g CLA diet 2, 0.75 g CLA diet A3 and 1 g CLA diet A4. Each treatment was replicated thrice.

It was observed that supplementation of CLA in broiler diets had a significant effect on average body weight. Dressing percentages increased due to CLA supplementation and were significantly higher in A2-A4 group of birds compared to control group A1.

Results revealed that the concentration of linoleic acid in broiler meat increased with increasing concentration of dietary CLA. The highest linoleic acid concentration was found in A4 group, followed by A3, A2 and A1 groups and all treatments with added CLA were significantly different from A1. This suggested that CLA supplementation increased the linoleic acid content of the broiler meat, which ultimately enhanced its fatty acid composition.

The CLA played an important role in fat metabolism in general, particularly in liver cells. It is posited that these cells worked to increase the deposition of CLA through the replacement and translocation of fatty acids in the meat, producing a functional food with high nutritional value. Moreover, because poultry are mono-gastric animals, they do not have the linoleateisomerase required to synthesize CLA from available precursors in their body6.


Conjugated linoleic acid, broilers, production performance, fatty acids in meat,linoleateisomerase, deposition of CLA, fatty acid composition.

Pakistan Journal of Biological Sciences


  1. Petracci, M. and C. Cavani, 2011. Muscle growth and poultry meat quality issues. Nutrients, 4: 1-12.
  2. Hur, S.J., G.B. Park and S.T. Joo, 2007. Biological activities of conjugated linoleic acid (Cla) and effects of CLA on animal products. Sci., 110: 221-229.
  3. Park, Y., K.J. Albright, W. Liu, J.M. Storkson, M.E. Cook and M.W. Pariza, 1997. Effect of conjugated linoleic acid on body composition in mice. Lipids, 32: 853-858.
  4. Chin, S.F., J.M. Storkson, K.J. Albright, M.E. Cook and M.W. Pariza, 1994. Conjugated linoleic acid is a growth factor for rats as shown by enhanced weight gain and improved feed efficiency. Nutr., 124: 2344-2349.
  5. Al-Hassan A. Q., Luma K. B. and F. M. A., 2017. Effect of Adding Dietary Conjugated Linoleic Acid to Broiler Diets on Production Performance and Fatty Acid Content in Meat. J. Nutr., 16: 497-501.
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