Performance, Egg Quality, and Immunity of Laying Hens Due to Natural Carotenoid Supplementation: A Meta-analysis
Received: Oct 12, 2022 ; Revised: Dec 15, 2022 ; Accepted: Dec 16, 2022
Published Online: Dec 27, 2022
This study aimed to investigate the effectiveness of carotenoid supplementation on the performance, egg quality, and immunity of laying hens using a meta-analysis approach. The database was searched using Google Scholar and Scopus, from 2012 to 2022. The literature was published in English. 47 articles were selected for meta-analysis. Analyses were performed using the Open Meta-analyst for Ecology and Evolution (OpenMEE) software. The heterogeneity and data validation against publication bias were analyzed using JASP 0.16.2 software. Overall, the results showed that carotenoid supplementation improved feed intake by 0.32 g/day/hen (95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.02 to 0.61), final body weight by 0.33 g/hen (95% CI = 0.05 to 0.60), egg production by 0.38% (95% CI = 0.14 to 0.63), egg weight by 0.29 g (95% CI = 0.09 to 0.5), yolk colour by 2.11 (95% CI = 1.71 to 2.51), haugh unit (HU) by 0.26 ( 95% CI = 0.11 to 0.42), yolk carotenoids by 1.17 µg/kg (95% CI = 0.59 to 1.75), immunoglobulin A (IgA) by 0.74 mg/L (95% CI = 0.18 to 1.29), and lower yolk cholesterol by -0.38 mg/g (95% CI = -0.59 to -0.16). Feed conversion ratio (FCR), eggshell thickness, and white blood cells were unaffected by the application of carotenoids. The heterogeneity analysis showed variability in all studies (<0.05). In conclusion, carotenoid supplementation can elevate productivity, enhance egg quality, and improve immunity. However, based on Kendall’s test, there was a publication bias in several parameters, namely FCR, egg weight, HU, yolk carotenoids, and IgA.