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Current Research in Poultry Science
  Year: 2011 | Volume: 1 | Issue: 2 | Page No.: 54-65
DOI: 10.3923/crpsaj.2011.54.65
Functional, Anatomical and Histological Development of Caecum in Rabbits
A.E. Abdel-Khalek, Z.M. Kalaba and M.R. El-Gogary

Rabbit caecum is the largest digestive compartment of Gastrointestinal Tract (GIT) representing a distinct organ for fermentation. This study aimed to investigate development of rabbit caecum with age progress from 3 up to 16 weeks. New Zealand White rabbits were slaughtered at 3, 4, 6, 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age (3 rabbits at each age) to determine fermentation parameters and anatomical and histological characteristics of caecum in relation with growth performance. With age progress, Live Body Weight (LBW), feed intake and weight gain increased (p<0.05). At 3 weeks, Volatile Fatty Acids (VFA) was lowest (25.33 mmol L-1) while ammonia-N and pH were highest (13.0 mmol L-1 and 7.33, p<0.05). VFA doubled at 4 weeks, peaked at 6-8 weeks and decreased at 12-16 weeks (p<0.05). Ammonia-N and pH was lowest at 6 and 8 weeks (8.0 mmol L-1 and 5.47, p<0.05). Caecal Tissue Weight (CTW) was lightest (2.3 g) at 3 weeks and heaviest (33.2 g) at 16 weeks. CTW relative to GIT reduced from 22% at 3 weeks to 16.1% at 16 weeks and increased relative to LBW from 1.5% at 3 weeks to be highest (1.9%) at 8 weeks (p<0.05). There was increase in caecal length from 14.2 cm at 3 weeks to 42.1 cm at 12 weeks and in its width from 0.8 cm at 3 weeks to 3.9 cm at 6 weeks (p<0.05). Thickness of tunica musculosa, submucosa and mucosa as well as lamina epithelialis mucosa increased at 3-4 weeks and again at 12-16 weeks (p<0.05). The current study indicated dramatic changes of anatomical, histological and functional characteristics of rabbit caecum between 3 and 4 weeks. The complete physiological development of rabbit caecum was evidence at 12 weeks of age.
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How to cite this article:

A.E. Abdel-Khalek, Z.M. Kalaba and M.R. El-Gogary, 2011. Functional, Anatomical and Histological Development of Caecum in Rabbits. Current Research in Poultry Science, 1: 54-65.

DOI: 10.3923/crpsaj.2011.54.65








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