Dietary effects on bone quality and turnover, and Ca and P metabolism in chickens

B Williams, D Waddington, S Solomon, C Farquharson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The responses of skeletal health and blood calcium (Ca) and phosphorus (P) status to different dietary calcium and available P (avP) contents were examined in 2-week-old chickens. High avP content resulted in more inorganic P (P(i)) and less ionised Ca (Ca(2+)) in the blood. Birds on low Ca and high avP diets showed a higher incidence of tibial dyschondroplasia and hypocalcaemic rickets and were therefore assumed to be hypocalcaemic. However the molar Ca:P ratio in bone was closer to the expected 1.67:1 in diets high in avP. No significant dietary mineral content effect was found on bone mineral content, or breaking strength, within the range of diets used. Results suggest that variations in molar Ca:P ratios in bone have little effect on mechanical competence, and that diets for this strain should be higher in Ca, and could be lower in avP, than current recommendations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-7
Number of pages7
JournalResearch in Veterinary Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2000


  • Amino Acids
  • Animals
  • Bone Density
  • Bone Remodeling
  • Calcitriol
  • Calcium
  • Calcium, Dietary
  • Chickens
  • Colorimetry
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Male
  • Models, Biological
  • Osteocalcin
  • Osteochondrodysplasias
  • Phosphorus
  • Phosphorus, Dietary
  • Radioimmunoassay
  • Rickets
  • Spectrophotometry, Atomic
  • Tibia


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