Embryotoxic effects of Ciprofloxacin in Chicken: A potential risk for antibiotic resistance

Bibi Nazia Murtaza, Sidra tul Muntaha, Muhammad Siraj, Mujaddad Ur Rehman, Aneela Rehman


Background: Ciprofloxacin is considered as a relatively safe drug having broad spectrum antimicrobial activity in humans and animals including poultry, besides its reported cartilage damage in children and debated use in pregnancy.

Methods: Current study is designed to highlight the embryotoxic effects of ciprofloxacin in chicken. In the study fertilized eggs were categorized in 5 groups incubated at standard parameters. On 4th day of incubation, group1 and 2 were injected with Ciprofloxacin (30 and 60 mg/egg respectively). Group 3 was pinched with needle only and group 4 was injected with sterilized saline solution. Group 5 was kept as a control, without any injection or pinching.

Results: On the 18th day of incubation, the growth of embryos was monitored. Hemorrhages on neck and head areas were noticed in treated group treated with 60 mg/egg. Low body weight along with the defective beak and nail formation was noticed. No other clear external deformity was observed in any treated and normal groups. It can be inferred that embryotoxic effects of ciprofloxacin cannot be ignored. High or repeated doses can reduce the turnover number of successful hatching chicks and the consumption of antibiotics treated chicken can lead to the development of antimicrobial resistance in humans.

Conclusion: It can be concluded that recommended dose limit is very important to avoid the harmful effect of antibiotics and chemicals. Embryotoxic effect of ciprofloxacin cannot be ignored. Use of antibiotic/s in poultry and live stocks should be carefully monitored and judged on medical basis; also its use for growth promotion should be discontinued.

Keywords: Ciprofloxacin; Poultry; Antibiotic resistance; Embryotoxic effects; Antimicrobial activity  

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