Biotin deficiency (Nutritional dermatitis)

Occurrence: Worldwide.
Species affected: All poultry.
Age affected: Young and embryonic through adult deficiency.
Causes: Deficiency of biotin in diet. Bioavailability in grains is variable.
Effects: Skin sores (crusty lesions) on the toes, foot pad and beak and feather loss in young birds. Poor hatchability results from adult deficiency.

Detailed causes:
Biotin is a cofactor is carboxylation and decarboxylation reactions involving fixation of carbon dioxide. The reactions have important roles in anabolic processes and in nitrogen metabolism. Biotin is involved in a coenzyme formation that is needed for proper formation of skin and feathers may be involved in fatty liver and kidney syndrome and acute death syndrome. Hatched embryos have webbing between the third and fourth toes. Young poultry of all species will display clinical signs if biotin is deficient. Bioavailability of biotin in grains is extremely variable and can result in a deficiency.

Clinical signs:
Signs include skin sores (crusty lesions) on the toes, foot pad and beak, feather loss in young birds and poor hatchability in adults.

Portmortem lesions
Fatty livers and kidneys with heart attacks characterised by blood clot in the abdominal cavity can be seen.

Postmortem lesions (sterile dermatitis) and histopathology are characteristic. It simulates T-2 toxin, bumblefoot, and bacterial dermatitis.

Treatment and control:

Dietary alteration will relieve signs.

Restore proper amount of the vitamin in the diet.