Full Length Research Paper
Histomorphometry of the small intestinal mucosa of the red jungle fowl (RJF) and commercial broiler breed (CBC) from day one to four months post-hatch were investigated. For the sake of comparison between these two breeds, the following parameters were included: the number of villi, villus surface area and the intestinal surface area for each small intestinal segment. New procedure for enumerating the intestinal villi was performed by using the standard paraffin sections, whereby the villi were counted through their cross sections using an image analyzer. The numbers of villi were significantly higher in the RJF than the CBC for all the intestinal segments from the day one to four months post-hatch. The villi numbers showed a decreased with age. The villus surface area was significantly higher in the CBC than the RJF for all intestinal segments for all the ages. For the duodenal surface area, the RJF showed a higher value than the CBC at one day old chick, but data was reversed on day 20 post-hatch; the data in the remaining days showed no significant differences. While for the jejunal and ileal surface areas, the CBC exhibited significantly higher values except day 10 where both breeds showed no difference for the jejunum and day 120 for the ileum, the RJF showed higher value.The selection for high body weight decreased the villi number of the small intestine, but in the same time increased the villus surface area for all the intestinal segments which reflects the increase in mucosal surface area particularly the jejunum and ileum.
Key words: Intestinal villi, villi number, surface area, red jungle fowl.
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