Blood biochemical and histopathological changes in vital organs of rabbits were studied after 19 wk of feeding composite diets (75 concentrate : 25 roughage) incorporating either urea (2%, wt/wt) ammoniated or alkali (1.5%, wt/wt) treated neem kernel meal (NKM) replacing peanut meal protein of control diet by either 50 or 100%. The blood biochemical constituents (Haemoglobin, Alanine amino transferase, Aspartate amino transferase, Total protein, Blood urea nitrogen &Cholesterol) in rabbits fed on processed NKM diet at either levels, were comparable to the values of thos on control diet except a lowered (p < 0.05) blood glucose concentration in processed NKM fed rabbits as compared to that in control diet fed ones. Histological examination revealed increased goblet cell activity, stunting of jejunal villi, mild tubular degeneration in kidney and hepatic fibro-cellular reaction in rabbits fed on urea ammoniated and alkali treated NKM diets with less marked changes in the latter. Testicular changes with variable degree of disorganization and vacuolation of spermatogonial cells were noticed in rabbits fed higher levels of urea-ammoniated and alkali treated NKM. Thus, alkali treatment and urea-ammoniation were effective in detoxification of meal, but the processing technology is to be further perfected to prevent cumulative effect of residual neem bitters in long term feeding.
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