Hostname: page-component-7d684dbfc8-lxvtp Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-09-24T21:14:23.725Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "corePageComponentGetUserInfoFromSharedSession": true, "coreDisableEcommerce": false, "coreDisableSocialShare": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForArticlePurchase": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForBookPurchase": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForElementPurchase": false, "coreUseNewShare": true, "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

Effect of vitamin E in heat-stressed poultry

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  10 August 2011

Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan
Department of Zoology and Fisheries, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan
Department of Clinical Science, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Razi University, Iran
Department of Animal Production, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Bari ‘Aldo Moro’, 70010 Valenzano, Bari, Italy
Department of Clinical Science, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Razi University, Iran
Department of Zoology and Fisheries, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad, Pakistan
Department of Animal Production, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Bari ‘Aldo Moro’, 70010 Valenzano, Bari, Italy
Corresponding author:
Get access


Heat stress is associated with compromised performance and productivity in poultry due to declines in feed intake, nutrient utilisation, growth rate, egg production and quality, feed efficiency and immunity. Additionally, heat stress is characterised by reduced antioxidant status in birds, resulting in increased oxidative stress. Heat stress is also linked with increased economic losses due to mortality of birds. Vitamin E is a major chain-breaking antioxidant in biological systems. An optimum response with supplementation of vitamin E in feed has been found to improve feed intake, body weight gain, feed efficiency, egg production and quality, nutrient digestibility, immune response and antioxidant status in poultry birds. This work compiles past and present information about the role of vitamin E in heat-stressed poultry.

Review Article
Copyright © World's Poultry Science Association 2011

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


AIT-BOULAHSEN, A., GARLICH, J.D. and EDENS, F.W. (1995) Potassium chloride improves the thermotolerance of chickens exposed to acute heat stress. Poultry Science 74: 75-87.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
AJAKAIYE, J.J., AYO, J.O. and OJO, S.A. (2010) Effects of heat stress on some blood parameters and egg production of Shika Brown layer chickens transported by road. Biology Research 43 183-189.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
ASLI, M.M., HOSSEINI, S.A., LOTFOLLAHIAN, H. and SHARIATMADARI, F. (2007) Effect of probiotics, yeast, vitamin E and vitamin C supplements on performance and immune response of laying hens during high environmental temperature. International Journal of Poultry Science 6:895-900.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
ATTIA, Y.A., HASSAN, R.A. and QOTA, M.A. (2009) Recovery from adverse effects of heat stress on slow-growing chicks in the tropics 1: Effect of ascorbic acid and different levels of betaine. Tropical Animal Health and Production 41: 807-818.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
BALNAVE, D. (2004) Challenges of accurately defining the nutrient requirements of heat-stressed poultry. Poultry Science 83: 5-14.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
BALNAVE, D. and MUHEEREZA, S.K. (1997) Improving eggshell quality at high temperatures with dietary sodium bicarbonate. Poultry Science 76: 588-593.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
BOLLENGIER-LEE, S., MITCHELL, M.A., UTOMO, D.B., WILLIAMS, P.E.V. and WHITEHEAD, C.C. (1998) Influence of high dietary vitamin E supplementation on egg production and plasma characteristics in hens subjected to heat stress. British Poultry Science 39: 106-112.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
BONNET, S., GERAERT, P.A., LESSIRE, M., CARRE, B. and GUILLAUMIN, S. (1997) Effect of high ambient temperature on feed digestibility in broilers. Poultry Science 76: 857-863.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
CIFTCI, M., ERTAS, O.N. and GULER, T. (2005) Effects of vitamin E and vitamin C dietary supplementation on egg production and egg quality of laying hens exposed to a chronic heat stress. Revue de Medecine Veterinaire 156: 107-111.Google Scholar
DAGHIR, N.J. (2009) Nutritional strategies to reduce heat stress in broilers and broiler breeders. Lohmann information 44: 6-15.Google Scholar
DONKER, R.A., NIEUWLAND, M.G.B. and VAN DER ZIJPP, A.J. (1990) Heat-stress influences on antibody production in chicken lines selected for high and low immune responsiveness. Poultry Science 69: 599-607.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
EMERY, D.A., VOHRA, P., ERNST, R.A. and MORRISON, S.R. (1984) The effect of cyclic and constant ambient temperatures on feed consumption, egg production, egg weight, and shell thickness of heat. Poultry Science 63: 2027-2035.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
ENSMINGER, M.E., OLDFIELD, J.E. and HEINEMANN, W.W. (1990) Feeds and Nutrition. Pages 8-120. The Ensminger Publishing Company, Clovis, CA.Google Scholar
GOUS, R.M. and MORRIS, T.R. (2005) Nutritional interventions in alleviating the effects of high temperatures in broiler production. World's Poultry Science Journal 61: 463-475.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
GROSS, W.B. and SIEGEL, H.S. (1983) Evaluation of the heterophil/lymphocyte ratio as a measure of stress in chickens. Avian Diseases 27: 972-979.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
GURSU, M.F., ONDERCI, M., GULCU, F. and SAHIN, K. (2004) Effects of vitamin C and folic acid supplementation on serum paraoxonase activity and metabolites induced by heat stress in vivo. Nutrition Research 24: 157-164.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
HAI, B.Y.L., RONG, D. and ZHANG, Z.Y. (2000) The effect of thermal environment on the digestion of broilers. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition 83: 57-64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
HALLIWELL, B.E. and GUTTERIDGE, J.M.C. (1989) Lipid peroxidation: A radical chain reaction. Free Radicals in Biology and Medicine. Pages 188-218. 2nd ed. Oxford University Press, New York, NY.Google Scholar
HAYAT, J., BALNAVE, D. and BRAKE, J. (1999) Sodium bicarbonate and potassium bicarbonate supplements for broilers can cause poor performance at high temperatures. British Poultry Science 40: 411-418.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
HURWITZ, S., BEN-GAL, I. BARTOV, I., and TALPAZ, H. (1983) The response of growing turkeys to dietary nutrient density. Poultry Science 62: 875-881.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
HURWITZ, S., WEISELBERG, M., EISNER, U., BARTOV, I., RIESENFELD, G., SHARVIT, M., NIV, A. and BORNSTEIN, S. (1980) The energy requirements and performance of growing chickens and turkeys as affected by environmental temperature. Poultry Science 59: 2290-2299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
KADYMOV, R.A. and ALESKEROV, Z.A. (1988) Immunological reactivity of poultry organism under high temperature conditions. Doklady Akademii Nauk 5: 33-35.Google Scholar
KIRUNDA, D.F.K., SCHEIDELER, S.E. and MCKEE, S.R. (2001) The Efficacy of Vitamin E (DL-α-tocopheryl acetate) Supplementation in Hen Diets to Alleviate Egg Quality Deterioration Associated with High Temperature Exposure. Poultry Science 80:1378-1383.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
KLASING, K.C. (1998) Nutritional modulation of resistance to infectious diseases. Poultry Science 77: 1119-1125.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
LEBMAN, D.A. and COFFMAN, R.L. (1988) Interleukin 4 causes isotype switching to IgE in T cell-stimulated clonal B cell cultures. Journal of Experimental Medicine 168: 853-862.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
LIN, H., JIAO, H.C., BUYSE, J. and DECUYPERE, E. (2006) Strategies for preventing heat stress in poultry. World's Poultry Science Journal 62: 71-86.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
MASHALY, M.M., HENDRICKS, G.L., KALAMA, M.A., GEHAD, A.E., ABBAS, A.O. and PATTERSON, P.H. (2004) Effect of Heat Stress on Production Parameters and Immune Responses of Commercial Laying Hens. Poultry Science 83: 889-894.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
MCDOWELL, L.R. (1989) Vitamins in animal nutrition: vitamin C, folacin, in: MCDOWELL, L.R. (Ed) Comparative Aspects to Human Nutrition, pp. 298-322.Google Scholar
MCKEE, J.S., HARRISON, P.C. and RISKOWSKI, G.L. (1997) . Effects of supplemental ascorbic acid on the energy conversion of broiler chicks during heat stress and feed withdrawal. Poultry Science 76: 1278-1286.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
MORRISSEY, P.A.S., BRANDON, D.J., BUCKLEY, P.J.A. SHEEHY and FRIGG, M. (1997) Tissue contents of α-tocopherol and oxidative stability of broilers receiving dietary α-tocopherol acetate supplement for various periods post-slaughter. British Poultry Science 38: 84-88.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
NAZIROGLU, M., SAHIN, K., SIMSEK, H., AYEDILEK, N. and ERTAS, O.N. (2000) The effect of food withdrawal and darkening on lipid peroxidation of laying hens in high ambient temperatures. Dtsch Tierarztl Wochenschr 107: 199-202.Google Scholar
NIU, Z.Y., YAN, Q.L. and LI, W.C. (2009) Effects of different levels of vitamin E on growth performance and immune responses of broilers under heat stress. Poultry Science 88: 2101-2107.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
NRC, (1981) Poultry. Effect of Environment on Nutrient Requirements of Domestic Animals. National Academy Press, Washington, DC. Pages: 109-134.Google Scholar
NRC, (1994) Nutrient requirements of poultry, National Academy Press, Washington, D.C., Ninth Edition.Google Scholar
PURON, D., SANTAMARIA, R. and SEGURA, J.C. (1994) Effect of sodium bicarbonate, on broilers performance in a acetylsalicylic, and ascorbic acid in tropical environment. Journal of Applied Poultry Research 3: 141-145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
PUTHPONGSIRIPORN, U., SCHEIDELER, S.E., SELL, J.L. and BECK, M.M. (2001) Effects of vitamin E and C supplementation on performance, in vitro lymphocyte proliferation, and antioxidant status of laying hens during heat stress. Poultry Science 80: 1190-1200.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
RASHIDI, A.A., GOFRANI, F., IVARI, Y., KHATIBJOO, A. and VAKILI, R. (2010) Effect of dietary fat, vitamin E and zinc on immune response and blood parameters of broilers reared under heat stress. Research Journal of Poultry Science 3: 32-38.Google Scholar
SAHIN, K. and KUCUK, O. (2001a) Effects of vitamin C and vitamin E on performance, digestion of nutrients, and carcass characteristics of Japanese quails reared under chronic heat stress (34°C). Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition 85: 335-342.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
SAHIN, K. and KUCUK, O. (2001b) Effects of vitamin E and selenium on performance, on performance, digestion of nutrients and carcass characteristics of Japanese quails reared under chronic heat stress (34°C), Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition 85: 342-348.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SAHIN, K. and KUCUK, O. (2003) Zinc supplementation alleviates heat stress in laying Japanese quail. Journal of Nutrition 33: 2808-2811.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
SAHIN, K., SMITH, M.O., ONDERCI, M., SAHIN, N., GURSU, M.F. and KUCUK, D.O. (2005) Supplementation of zinc from organic or inorganic source improves performance and antioxidant status of heat-distressed quail. Poultry Science 84: 882-887.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SAHIN, K., ONDERCI, M., SAHIN, N., GURSU, M.F., KHACHIK, F. and KUCUK, O. (2006) . Effects of lycopene supplementation on antioxidant status, oxidative stress, performance and carcass characteristics in heat-stressed Japanese quail. Journal of Thermal Biology 31: 307-312.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
SAHIN, K., SAHIN, N. and ONDERCI, M. (2002) Vitamin E supplementation can alleviate negative effects of heat stress on egg production, egg quality, digestibility of nutrients and egg yolk mineral concentrations of Japanese quails. Research in Veterinary Science 73: 307-312.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SAHIN, K., SAHIN, N., KUCUK, O., HAYIRLI, A. and PRASAD, A.S. (2009) . Role of dietary zinc in heat-stressed poultry: A review. Poultry Science 88: 2176-2183.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SANDERCOCK, D.A., HUNTER, R.R., NUTE, G.R., MITCHELL, M.A. and HOCKING, P.M. (2001) . Acute heat stress-induced alterations in blood acid-base status and skeletal muscle membrane integrity in broiler chickens at two ages: Implications for meat quality. Poultry Science 80: 418-425.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SAPOLSKY, R., RIVIER, C., YAMAMOTO, G., PLOTSKY, P. and VALE, W. (1987) Interleukin-1 stimulates the secretion of hypothalamic corticotropin-releasing factor. Science 238: 522-524.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SIEGEL, H.S. (1995) Stress, strains and resistance. British Poultry Science 36: 3-22.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
SMITH, A.J. (1974) Changes in the average weight and shell thickness of egg produced by hens exposed to high environmental temperature- A review. Tropical Animal Health and Production 6: 237-244.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
ST-PIERRE, N.R., COBANOV, B. and SCHNITKEY, G. (2003) Economic losses from heat stress by US livestock industries. Journal of Dairy Science 86: (E. Suppl.) E52-E77.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
WALLIS, I.R. and BALNAVE, D. (1984) The influence of environmental temperature, age and sex on the digestibility of amino acids in growing broiler chickens. British Poultry Science 25: 401-407.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
WHITEHEAD, C.C., BOLLENGIER-LEE, S., MITCHELL, M.A. and WILLIAMS, P.E.V. (1998) Alleviation of depression in egg production in heat stressed laying hens by vitamin E. Proceedings of 10th European Poultry Conference, Jerusalem, Israel, page 576-578.Google Scholar
WOLFENSON, D., BACHRACH, D., MAMAN, M., GRABER, Y. and ROZENBOIM, I. (2001) Evaporative cooling of ventral regions of the skin in heat stressed laying hens. Poultry Science 80: 958-964.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
YALCIN, S., OZKAN, S., TURKMUT, L. and SIEGEL, P.B. (2001) Responses to heat stress in commercial and local broiler stocks. 1. Performance traits. British Poultry Science 42: 149-152.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
YARDIBI, H. and TÜRKAY, G. (2008) The effects of vitamin e on the antioxidant system, egg production, and egg quality in heat stressed laying hens. Turkish Journal of Veterinary and Animal Sciences 32: 319-325.Google Scholar
ZULKIFLI, I., NORMA, M.T., ISRAF, D.A. and OMAR, A.R. (2000) The effect of early age feed restriction on subsequent response to high environmental temperatures in female broiler chickens. Poultry Science 79: 1401-1407.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
ZUPRIZAL, M., CHANNEAU, A.M. and GERAERT, P.A. (1993) Influence of ambient temperature on true digestibility of protein and amino acids of rapeseed and soybean meals in broilers. Poultry Science 72: 289-295.CrossRefGoogle Scholar