In vivo estimation of body fat content of new-born rabbits using the Tobec method
An EM-SCAN SA-2 type Small Animal Body Composition Analyser (TOBEC) was used to determine the total conductivity index (E value) of 50 new-born rabbits. After the TOBEC measurements the animals were slaughtered and their bodies were homogenised by grinding twice; fat content was then determined by a chemical procedure. A weak correlation (r=-0.09) was obtained between E value and body fat percentage. Due to the high correlation between E value and body weight (r=0.90), estimated fat content was corrected for this trait [CF(%) = 11.7 - 0.1127 x (1.61 x (BW - BW) + E)], resulting in a marked improvement in the correlation (r=0.51) between predicted and measured fat content. In spite of this improvement, the medium correlation makes the TOBEC method unsuitable far the accurate prediction of body fat content of new-born rabbits, although it can be used far the identification of animals with extremely high or low fat content.
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