The correlations between chemical composition and coefficient of standardized ileal digestibility (CSID) of crude protein (CP) and amino acids (AA) were determined in 22 soybean meal (SBM) samples originated from USA (n = 8), Brazil (BRA; n = 7) and Argentina (ARG; n = 7) in 21-day old broilers. Birds were fed a commercial maize-SBM diet from 1 to 17 days of age followed by the experimental diets in which the SBM tested was the only source of protein (205 g CP/kg) for three days. Also, in vitro nitrogen (N) digestion study was conducted with these samples using the two-step enzymatic method. The coefficient of apparent ileal digestibility (CAID) of the SBM, independent of the origin, varied from 0.820 to 0.880 for CP, 0.850 to 0.905 for lysine (Lys), 0.859 to 0.907 for methionine (Met) and 0.664 to 0.750 for cysteine (Cys). The corresponding CSID values varied from 0.850 to 0.966 for CP, 0.891 to 0.940 for Lys, 0.931 to 0.970 for Met and 0.786 to 0.855 for Cys. The CSID of CP and Lys of the SBM were positively correlated with CP (r = 0.514; P menor que 0.05 and r = 0.370; P = 0.09, respectively), KOH solubility (KOH sol.) (r = 0.696; P menor que 0.001 and r = 0.619; P menor que 0.01, respectively), trypsin inhibitor activity (TIA) (r = 0.541; P menor que 0.01 and r = 0.416; P = 0.05, respectively) and reactive Lys (r = 0.563; P menor que 0.01 and r = 0.486; P menor que 0.05) values, but no relation was observed with neutral detergent fiber and oligosaccharide content. No relation between the CSID of CP determined in vivo and N digestibility determined in vitro was found. The CSID of most key AA were higher for the USA and the BRA meals than for the ARG meals. For Lys, the CSID was 0.921, 0.919 and 0.908 (P menor que 0.05) and for Cys 0.828, 0.833 and 0.800 (P menor que 0.01) for USA, BRA and ARG meals, respectively. It is concluded that under the conditions of this experiment, the CSID of CP and Lys increased with CP content, KOH sol., TIA and reactive Lys values of the SBM. The CSID of most limiting AA, including Lys and Cys, were higher for USA and BRA meals than for ARG meals
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