In a previous study, we saw that PUFA and particularly n 3 content of partridge parent diet affect learning ability and memory retention of day old offspring. An n 3 diet content of 4.04 g/kg and an n 6/n 3 ratio of 3.1 produced the best behavioural score. Since references suggest that in mice an n 6/n 3 ratio of 4 affect behaviour more than absolute PUFA and n 3 level, we studied the effect of n 3, with the same n 6/n 3 ratio, on learning ability and memory retention of day old partridge chicks. Obtained from eggs laid on the 4th laying week, 144 day old chicks were tested by mean a one trial Passive Avoidance Task (PAL task). A negative experience consisting in allowing the chick to peck a coloured (red) bead bathed in a bitter liquid (Methyl Anthranilate) was used. Parents were fed three different diets containing 0.48, 4.04 and 7.60 g/kg of n 3 with an n 6/n 3 ratio of 4. Results demonstrated that when n 6/n 3 ratio of 4 is used in laying partridge diet the best behavioural score is expressed by the offspring of the parents fed the highest n 3 content. In our experiment, in fact, the group containing the highest n 3 level showed the best (P<0.05) behavioural score; significant lower latency time and higher number of pecks given toward the right (blue) bead.
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