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Articles by D.C. Eze
Total Records ( 8 ) for D.C. Eze
  E.C. Okwor , D.C. Eze and M.O. Uzuegbu
  Thirty (30) vials of Newcastle Disease (ND) vaccine. La Sota were procured locally and tested for potency when stored under conditions of irregular power supply. The vaccines were of the same batch and were eighteen months to the expiration time. The potency of the vaccines was tested using Haemagglutination (HA) test before storage. The vaccines’ immunogenicity was determined in a batch of 250, 3 weeks old white cockerels after which the vaccines were stored in the refrigerator with two-third of the storage period at 0-4oC and the remaining one third at room temperature of 26-30oC. During the study, the methods of vaccine storage were alternated frequently to reflect the frequent power outages. The humoral immune response of the vaccinated chickens was estimated by Haemagglutination Inhibition (HI) test. The potency of the vaccines was tested on days 28, 56, 84, 112 and 140 post storage. On day 140, another batch of 250, 3 weeks old white cockerels were vaccinated with a vial from the stock and the humoral immune response of these chickens was evaluated at 3 weeks post vaccination. The mean HA titre of the vaccine before storage was 128, while the mean HA titres of the vaccines after storage (i.e., day 140) was 8. The mean HI titres of the vaccinated chickens before and after storage were 1005.7 and 8.3, respectively. Student t test was used to compare the mean HI titre of the chicken vaccinated prior and at the end of vaccine storage. The GMT mean HI titre of the chickens vaccinated prior to storage was significantly (p<0.05) higher than that of the chicken vaccinated at the end of vaccine storage.
  C. Ezema and D.C. Eze
  This study investigated the weight gain performance and economic benefit of probiotic (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) supplementation in PKC based broiler diet. The ideal level of inclusion for optimum broiler productivity was also determined. A total of 140 broiler chicks were randomly distributed into seven groups of 20 birds each. Each group was subdivided into four replicates of five birds each. Groups 1-5 were placed on experimental diet made of 70% basal diet and 30% PKC. Groups 1-4 had probiotic (yeast) supplement at levels of 0.4 gm yeast/kg, 0.8 gm yeast/kg, 1.2 gm yeast/kg and 1.6 gm yeast/kg of feed respectively. Group 5 had no yeast (control 1). Group 6 had no PKC but had yeast (1.2 gm yeast/kg diet). Group 7 had no PKC and no yeast (control 2). All the groups were fed ad libitum. Daily feed intake and weekly weight gain were determined. The duration of the study was 10 weeks. There was no significant difference in feed intake. All the supplemented groups (groups 1-4 and 6) had higher weight gain and higher feed efficiency than the controls (groups 5 and 7). Group 2 had mean weight gain of 2.695±0.086 kg/bird which was significantly heavier (p<0.05) than the rest. Group 2 performed significantly better than others in weight gain and efficiency of feed utilization. The cost of feed to produce 1 kg live weight gain was cheapest in group 2 (N87.62/kg) and most costly in group 7 (N138.83/kg). Probiotic inclusion level of 0.8 gm yeast/kg diet was therefore recommended for optimum broiler production and maximum economic gain.
  E.C. Okwor and D.C. Eze
  A study on the outbreaks and prevalence of Newcastle Disease (ND) in village chickens in the savannah derived Eastern part of Nigeria was conducted based on cases submitted in two strategically located veterinary clinics. ND was diagnosed and confirmed by clinical signs, post mortem lesions and virus isolations in 11 day old embryonated chickens eggs. The study was carried out for a period of 3 years. Results showed similar distribution of outbreaks within the 3 year study period. Prevalence or outbreak of ND in village chickens was observed only during one period of the year, November-February period. This period coincides with the cold and harsh harmathan period usually seen from November to March in the Eastern part of Nigeria. The cold and harsh stress associated with this period is thought to worsen ND infected leading to spread and outbreaks. Veterinary awareness among the village farmers was also observed to be low in the control of ND in village chickens. Extension services involving education of the rural farmers, strategic vaccination prior to the period of outbreaks and biosecurity measures are recommended to help in the control of ND in village chickens.
  E.C. Okwor and D.C. Eze
  Marek’s Disease (MD) is an important viral disease that has been described in Nigeria. Though poultry farmers may not be familiar with the disease when compared to other common diseases like Newcastle Disease (ND) and Infections Bursal Disease (IBD) sporadic outbreaks of this disease occurs in poultry farms resulting in significant economic losses. This work investigated an outbreak and persistence of MD in batches of birds reared in a poultry farm in Nsukka, South East Nigeria between 2001 and 2009. The farm maintains many pens situated close to each other and introduces birds of different ages thereby housing different batches of birds throughout the year. The first outbreak occurred in a batch of 300 brown pullets at the age of 12 weeks. Infection occurred in all the subsequent batches of pullets introduced into the farm within the study period. Batches of broilers introduced into the farm and kept up to six weeks and above had the infection. Those that were sold before six weeks of age as brooded birds did not show signs of MD. Cockerels that were kept and reared to maturity showed signs of the disease while those that were reared and sold as brooded birds at four-five weeks did not show signs of the disease. In most cases, infection among the flock (morbidity) varied ranging from 5-15% with few acute cases up to 25%. We therefore suggested an ‘all-in-all-out’ system in case of outbreaks of the disease with reasonable period or interval between each stock.
  E.C. Okwor , J.O.A. Okoye and D.C. Eze
  The nervous signs of torticollis and paralysis in chickens affected with velogenic viscerotropic strains of Newcastle Disease Virus (NDV) are most often preceded by other common signs associated with velogenic Newcastle Disease (ND). This study was carried out to investigate the time of detection of NDV in the brain of affected chickens compared with the time of detection in other organs. Velogenic NDV (VGF-1) was obtained from the National Veterinary Research Institute, Vom. Nigeria. A total of 120 white cockerels were used for the experiment. At 6 weeks of age, the birds were divided into two groups of 80 and 40, the first group of 80 served as the infected group, while the second group served as control. Birds in the infected group were challenged each with 0.2 mL of this isolate each containing embryo infective dose 50% end point (EID50) of 106.36. Birds in the control group were inoculated with 0.2 mL of Phosphate Buffered Saline (PBS). Clinical signs and post mortem lesions were observed and recorded. Internal organs including the brain, proventriculus, spleen, thymus and bursa of Fabricius were collected at Post Mortem (PM) from the infected group and after sacrifice from the control group on days 5, 6, 7 8, 9, 10, 11, 12 and 21 Post Inoculation (PI). The organs collected on each day (five from infected and three from control) were pooled together on the basis of organs. Tissues extracts were prepared to constitute 80% suspension in PBS by homogenizing the pooled organs and using 4 gm of this with 1 mL of PBS. Each was centrifuged at 3000 rpm for 30 min and the supernatant collected. The supernatant was assayed for NDV using Haemagglutination (HA) and Haemagglutination Inhibition (HI) tests. Results showed typical clinical signs and PM lesions associated with velogenic ND. However, paralysis and torticollis appeared among few birds later in infection as compared to other signs of dullness, reduction in feed and water intake and greenish diarrhea. HA activity was seen in tissues extracts prepared from the brain by day 10 PI as compared to other organs, where it was detected earlier at day 5 PI. It was concluded that after viraemia, viruses multiplied first in non-nervous tissues and later in the nervous tissues. A possible explanation for this delay could be the role played by the blood-brain barrier in restricting the rate of infection of the nervous tissues. This may also explain why nervous signs appeared later in infection.
  E.C. Okwor , D.C. Eze and K.E. Okonkwo
  The serum antibody levels in village chickens reared in and around Nsukka, Southeast Nigeria was studied using Indirect Haemagglutination (IHA) test. A total of 484 serum samples were collected from these predominantly unvaccinated village chickens and examined. Result showed a high seroprevalence of 88.4%. This indicates the endemic nature of this infection among the village poultry population in the study area. These village poultry are by this result being incriminated as an important factor in the epidemiology of the disease in commercial and exotic chickens where frequent outbreaks occur. Education of the rural farmers and mass immunization of the villagers chickens were suggested as a way of reducing the maintenance and dissemination of the virus in the environment.
  C. Ezema and D.C. Eze
  This study investigated the effect of probiotic (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) on growth rate and evaluated the economic benefit of this supplementation in growing rabbits. Twenty male crossed-bred weaner rabbits were randomly divided into four groups (A, B, C and D) of five rabbits each. Each rabbit served as a replicate. They were fed pelleted grower mash and groups A to C had probiotic supplementation at varied levels of 0.08, 0.12 and 0.16 g/kg of diet, respectively. Group D had no yeast (control). Feed and water were given ad libitum. Daily feed intake was determined and the rabbits were weighed weekly. The study lasted thirteen weeks. Results showed that all the probiotic supplemented groups had higher but not statistically significant (p>0.05) feed intake and significantly (p<0.05) higher weight gain than the control. Cost of experimental diet per kilogram of live weight gain was cheapest (69.68) in group B (0.12 g yeast/kg diet) than other groups. Group B (0.12 g probiotic/kg of diet) was thus recommended for maximum weight gain and optimum economic benefit in rabbit production.
  E.C. Okwor and D.C. Eze
  The prevalence of Newcastle disease, a viral disease of birds in commercial birds reared in South-Eastern derived savannah zone of Nigeria was studied for a period of 3 years. Two Veterinary establishments located within the zone were used in the study. Cases in commercial chickens that were reported, examined clinically and through Post mortem findings and confirmed through laboratory examinations to be Newcastle disease were recorded. Field visits to farms that were reported to have outbreaks of infection was done and after clinical, Post mortem and laboratory examination, cases that were confirmed to be Newcastle disease were also recorded. Results showed a high prevalence during the dry harmattan period of November to February and fairly high prevalence during the peak rainy period of June and July. The stress from environmental conditions associated with these periods of the year in Nigeria was suggested to be the major factor that initiates and worsens the disease condition at these periods of the year. The stress condition is thought to lower the immune systems of the chickens thereby making them succumb early to infection and therefore, leading to an outbreak. The use of antistress and rugged vaccinations just was recommended prior to these periods of the year in order to protect birds from infections.
 
 
 
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