• β-mannanase;
  • Aspergillus niger;
  • feed enzyme;
  • broiler performance



Mannan is a hemicellulose constituent commonly found in plant-derived feed ingredients. The gum-like property of mannan can obstruct digestive enzymes and bile acids, resulting in impaired nutrient utilisation. In this study, β-mannanase production by Aspergillus niger strain BCC4525 was investigated using several agricultural residues under solid state condition. The biochemical properties of the target enzyme and the effects of enzyme supplementation on broiler performance and energy utilisation were assessed.


Among five carbon sources tested, copra meal was found to be the best carbon source for β-mannanase production with the maximum yield of 1837.5 U g−1. The crude β-mannanase exhibited maximum activity at 80 °C within a broad range of pH from 2 to 6. In vitro digestibility assay, which simulates the gastrointestinal tract system of broilers, showed that β-mannanase could liberate reducing sugars from corn/soybean diet. Surprisingly, β-mannanase supplementation had no significant effect on broiler feed intake, feed conversion rate or energy utilisation.


A high level of β-mannanase was produced by A. niger BCC4525 under solid state condition using copra meal as carbon source. Although the enzyme has the desired properties of an enzyme additive for improving broiler performance, it does not appear to be beneficial.© 2013 Society of Chemical Industry