• antioxidants;
  • plasma oxidative status;
  • broilers;
  • glutathione peroxidase;
  • superoxide dismutase;
  • ferric reducing ability of plasma;
  • malondialdehyde


In this study, the effect of dietary antioxidants on the plasma oxidative status of growing birds fed a diet rich in polyunsaturated fatty acids was investigated. One-day-old broilers were fed for 42 days a diet containing 4% linseed oil and supplemented with single plant extracts rich in antioxidants (natural tocopherols, rosemary, grape seed, green tea, tomato) or a combination of some of these plant extracts, in two different total doses (100 and 200 mg product/kg feed). A diet with synthetic antioxidants with and without α-tocopheryl acetate (200 mg/kg feed) were also included. The plasma oxidative status was evaluated measuring the ferric reducing ability of plasma (FRAP), the superoxide dismutase (SOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GSH-Px) activity. Lipid peroxidation was measured by thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances (TBARS). No significant effect of the dietary treatments was observed for FRAP as well as for TBARS. However, diet affected GSH-Px activity (p = 0.002) and a trend for an effect on SOD activity was observed (p = 0.084). A higher GSH-Px activity was found for 200 mg/kg tomato extract and natural α-tocopherol in relation to the corresponding 100 mg/kg treatment, and the lowest GSH-Px activity was measured for the synthetic antioxidants treatment. The lowest and highest SOD activity were found for the 200. and 100 mg/kg treatment with tomato extract respectively. In conclusion, the oxidative status and lipid oxidation of plasma in broilers was not affected by feeding natural antioxidant extracts at the doses in the present study, but some changes in antioxidant enzyme activities were observed, of which the implication remains to be elucidated.