December 26, 2008
UK scientists say rib development in turkeys essential
Researchers at the University of Manchester, Faculty of Life Sciences have pointed out that turkeys could breathe better and emerge healthier if they have healthy rib bones development.
Dr Jonathan Codd and Peter Tickle and their research team focused on the respiratory system and in particular developmental changes in the uncinate processes (bony levers which extend off the ribs) that help the birds to breathe. These levers are essential for the turkeys to breathe properly, as they help movements of the ribs and sternum.
The team worked in collaboration with Aviagen Turkeys and its findings are published in the leading avian biology journal Poultry Science.
PhD student Peter Tickle checked one hundred turkeys from eggs to adulthood.
Using a simple chemical staining technique and biomechanical (nano-indentation) testing, he determined the hardening of the levers from cartilage to bone was linked to air breathing and increases in muscle mass.