Frontiers of Agriculture and Food Technology

Frontiers of Agriculture and Food Technology ISSN 7295-2849 Vol. 3 (8), pp. 317-325, October, 2015. © International Scholars Journals

Full Length Research Paper

Nutritional evaluation of processed Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata) seeds-Soya bean (Glycine max) seeds- Maize (Zea mays) grains-Crayfish blend of weaning formulae

1*Obimba, Kelechukwu Clarence, 2Ihedimbu, Chiamaka Perpetua,  3Ozougwu, Jevas Chibuike, and 4Eziuzor, Chukwunyelum Samuel

1,2Department of Biochemistry, School of Biological Sciences, Federal University of Technology, Owerri, Nigeria. 3,4Physiology and Biomedical Research Unit, Department of Biological Sciences, College of Basic and Applied Sciences, Rhema University Aba, Abia State, Nigeria.

Corresponding author. E-mail:

Accepted 25 October, 2015


Weaning formulae, SCMC 20% (20% protein) and SCMC 16% (16% protein) prepared from available and affordable plants (soya bean seeds, cowpea seeds, maize grains, and fluted pumpkin leaves) and animal (crayfish) sources  were evaluated for their nutritional efficiency in a comparative study. The experimental design for the animal feeding trial is a single factor, Completely Randomized Design (CRD). Fourty male wistar albino rats were divided into four groups of 10 animals each, housed in stainless steel cages and fed ad-libitum on three different types of weaning formulae (SCMC-16%, SCMC-20%, and nutrend (Rd)), and a basal diet, for a period of 28 days. Results were recorded as values of mean ± S.E unit, as follows (range of values): growth performance (GP): (-25.1± 1.02 -86.2 ± 1.0 g), Serum albumin (SA) (1.78 ± 0.2-4.15 ± 0.1g/dl), Serum cholesterol (C) (155 ± 0.02-185 ± 0.02 g/dl), Serum triglyceride (T) (95± 0.04 -125± 0.01g/dl), WBCTotal (2754± 12-5183± 25.15 mm), Aspartate amino transferase (AST): (9.1 ± 0.01-18.1 ± 2.16  U/l), PCV% (27.1 ± 0.2-55.8 ± 1.2%), Net protein utilization (NPU%) (87.1 ± 2.1-97.2 ± 1.02%),  Biological value (BV) (90.2 ± 1.0-98.2 ± 1. 2), True digestibility (TD%): (90.2 ± 1.0-97.1 ± 1.02%), and Protein efficiency ratio (PER): (-1.35 ± 0.5-3.55± 0.01), Histopathology (liver tissues), diet group : SCMC-20% : normal; basal : degenerative changes. The SCMC-20% diet group had the significantly  highest mean values of all the parameters measured, except the AST activity, C and T of which it had the lowest. GP (grams) regressed multiply and significantly (p<0.05) with PCV%, SA (g/dl) and TD% of the SCMC-20% diet group. The regression and correlation between NPU% and SA (g/dl) of the SCMC-20% diet group was significant (p<0.05) (r = 0.985). The nutritional efficiency of the weaning formulae listed in sequential order of significant (p<0.05) decrease is: SCMC 20%>SCMC 16%/Rd (nutrend). The weaning formulae could serve as preventive and curative dietary therapies of protein energy malnutrition.                          

Keywords: Nutritional efficiency, histopathology, protein energy malnutrition.