Dietary β-alanine enhances brain, but not muscle, carnosine and anserine concentrations in broilers

Shozo Tomonaga, Kunio Kaneko, Yuji Kaji, Yasuhiro Kido, Donald Michael Denbow, Mitsuhiro Furuse

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Carnosine (β-alanyl-L-histidine) and its derivative anserine (β-alanyl-1-methyl-L-histidine) are present in high concentrations in the muscle and brain of chickens. They are known as antioxidants and putative neurotransmitters in the brain. If administration of β-alanine (β-Ala), one of the constituents of carnosine, could increase the concentrations of these dipeptides in the brain and muscles, it could improve brain function and increase the commercial value of the meat in chickens. As an early step in investigating this hypothesis, in the present study, the effect of dietary β-Ala on these dipeptide concentrations in the brain, Musculus pectoralis superficialis, Musculus pectoralis profundus and Musculus biceps femoris was investigated in broilers. Four-week-old broilers were given a commercial diet or diet containing 0.5, 1 or 2%β-Ala for 4 weeks. At the end of the experiment, concentrations of both dipeptides were increased in the brain, while taurine concentration was decreased. In the muscles, concentrations of these dipeptides were unchanged. These results indicate that dietary β-Ala might influence brain function, but is ineffective in increasing the concentrations of carnosine and anserine in the muscles of broilers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-86
Number of pages8
JournalAnimal Science Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2006

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Dietary β-alanine enhances brain, but not muscle, carnosine and anserine concentrations in broilers'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this