Since cinnamon has vitamins and minerals in addition to antioxidants compounds in its chemical composition studies have shown the potential of cinnamon supplementation on some important characteristics in the performance of birds. Thus, this study was conducted under the hypothesis that the inclusion of cinnamon in the laying quail diet could influence the performance of the birds through the expression of genes related to antioxidant activity and lipid metabolism. To test this hypothesis, 144 Japanese quail (Coturnix japonica) with an initial age of 18 weeks and average weight of 133g were distributed in a completely randomized design with two treatments: no cinnamon supplementation (NCS—control group) and with supplementation of 9g/kg of cinnamon powder (CPS). The experiment lasted for 84 days. At the end of the experimental period, six animals from each treatment were euthanized by cervical dislocation, blood was collected and organs weighed. Liver tissue was collected for gene expression and biochemical analyses. We observed a significant effect of cinnamon inclusion on the weight of the pancreas (P = 0.0418), intestine (P = 0.0209) and ovary (P = 0.0389). Lower weights of the pancreas and intestine, and a higher ovary weight was observed in birds receiving the CPS diet. Quails fed with cinnamon supplementation also had better feed conversion per egg mass (2.426 g /g, P = 0.0126), and higher triglyceride (1516.60 mg/dL, P = 0.0207), uric acid (7.40 mg/dL, P = 0.0003) and VLDL (300.40 mg/ dL, P = 0.0252) contents. A decreased content of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances (TBARS) and lower catalase activity was observed in the liver of quails from the CPS diet (0.086 nmoles/mg PTN, and 2.304 H2O2/min/mg PTN, respectively). Quails from the CPS group presented significantly greater expression of FAS (fatty acid synthase, 36,03 AU), ACC (Acetyl-CoA Carboxylase, 31.33 AU), APOAI (apolipoprotein A-I, 803,9 AU), ESR2 (estrogen receptor 2, 0.73 AU) SOD (superoxide dismutase, 4,933.9 AU) and GPx7 (glutathione peroxidase 7, 9.756 AU) than quails from the control group. These results allow us to suggest that cinnamon powder supplementation in the diet of laying quails can promote balance in the metabolism and better performance through the modulation of antioxidant activity and the expression of genes related to lipid metabolism.
Bastos, M. S., Del Vesco, A. P., Santana, T. P., Santos, T. S., De Oliveira Junior, G. M., Fernandes, R. P. M., … Gasparino, E. (2017). The role of cinnamon as a modulator of the expression of genes related to antioxidant activity and lipid metabolism of laying quails. PLoS ONE, 12(12). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0189619