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Reassessment of Biotin Requirement



Dr. Nelson E. Ward of DSM Nutritional Products Inc. has recently reviewed biotin requirements for broilers with specific emphasis on integrity of skin and the quality of broiler feet. This has stimulated a consideration of the role and benefits of biotin supplementation in the egg production industry.

Biotin has been recognized as an essential nutrient since 1940 although there was evidence of a nutritional requirement for an unidentified factor from the mid 1920’s onwards.  In 1940 “Vitamin H” which had been described as a factor essential for the development of skin and a second compound “Coenzyme R” involved in plant metabolism, were recognized as a common nutrient. In 1942 the structure of biotin was characterized followed by synthesis of the vitamin in the following year.