Nutritional evaluation of lectin-free soybeans for poultry

Michele W. Douglas, Carl M. Parsons, Theodore Hymowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


This study evaluated the nutritional value of raw lectin-free soybeans in comparison with raw Kunitz trypsin inhibitor-free soybeans, raw conventional soybeans, and commercial heat processed soybean meal (SBM). Analyzed lectin values (milligrams per kilogram) were 7.2, 7.1, and < 0.00015 for the Kunitz-free, conventional, and lectin-free soybeans, respectively. Three experiments were conducted using New Hampshire x Columbian male chicks fed 23% CP dextrosesoybean diets from 8 to 17 d of age. Growth performance of chicks fed lectin-free soybeans was greater (P < 0.05) than that of chicks fed raw conventional soybeans in all three experiments. However, performance of chicks fed lectin-free soybeans was lower than that of chicks fed Kunitz-free soybeans or SBM. The SBM yielded weight gains and feed efficiencies that were much higher than those observed from any of the raw soybeans. True amino acid digestibility and TMEn of the lectin-free and conventional soybeans were determined using the precision-fed cecectomized rooster assay. Seven roosters were crop-intubated with 30 g of soybeans and excreta were collected for 48 h. Digestibility coefficients of most amino acids for lectin-free soybeans were 5 to 8 percentage units higher than those for conventional soybeans, but the differences were not significant (P > 0.05). Likewise, the TMEn for lectin-free soybeans was 11% higher than that for raw conventional soybeans (3.577 vs 3.227 kcal/g DM) but the difference was not significant (P > 0.05). The results of this study indicate that the nutritional value of raw lectin-free soybeans is greater than raw conventional soybeans but is less than raw Kunitz-free soybeans and SBM, suggesting that trypsin inhibitor is a greater antinutritional factor than lectins.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)91-95
Number of pages5
JournalPoultry science
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1999


  • Chick
  • Digestibility
  • Lectin
  • Soybean
  • Trypsin inhibitor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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