Forsythia suspensa


Other Names:

Weeping Forsythia, Lian Qiao


  • Antioxidant
  • Antibacterial
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antiviral
  • Immunity
Forsythia (Forsythia suspensa) is a climbing plant of the Oleaceae plant family, that is used in traditional Asian medicines to treat gonorrhea, erysipedas, inflammation and pharyngitis. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, forsythia is referred to as Lian Qiao. Specific applications studied in poultry include:
  • Nutrients: The fruit contains high amounts of calcium (4,380 ppm), potassium (9,560 ppm), iron (440 ppm) and magnesium (1,160 ppm).
  • Antibacterial: Forsythiaside, a main active component in forsythia, has been reported to inhibit growth of Escherichia coli-10B, Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus-Rn4220.
  • Nutrient digestibility: Adding 100 mg/kg of forsythia extract (FSE) to the diet of 144 broilers, for 7 days showed that it enhanced nutrient digestibility and performance in chickens, by reducing oxidative stress and immune depression challenged by corticosterone (CS). Two separate studies conducted on 276 and 252 broilers, respectively, showed that adding 100 mg/kg of forsythia extract (FSE) to the diet improved growth performance even during high ambient temperatures, likely by enhancing immunity, reducing oxidative stress, and promoting good bacteria to colonize the digestive tract of the birds.
  • Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)TCM attributes include bitter in flavor and slightly cold in properties. It is associated with the lung, heart and gall bladder. Its essential functions include clearing away heat and toxic materials, reducing swelling, and dissipating nodules. Main forsythia uses and indications are wind-heat type common cold, febrile disease, anuria in heat strangury, boils and carbuncles, pyogenic infections, scrofula, goiter and tumor, and pharyngitis.

Poultry Specific Studies

TypePlant PartDosageSpecific useResultsRef
Chickensextract100 mg/kg of dietantioxidantDietary supplementation with FSE, BE, or both can improve the growth performance possibly by enhancing immunity, reducing oxidative stress, and promoting intestinal colonization by healthy microbiota of broilers under high stocking density.H Zhang et al.,2013
Chickens80 mg/kg of dietantiviralA number of results showed that Forsythoside A had both preventive and therapeutic effects in IBV-M41-infected chickens, among which the high-dose (80 mg/kg/d) prevention group.X Wang et al., 2020
Chickensextract100 mg/kg feedantioxidantDietary supplementation with Forsythia suspensa extract can enhance nutrient digestibility and growth performance possibly by reducing oxidative stress of broiler chickens under high ambient temperatures.L Wang et al., 2008
Chickens100 mg/kg of dietantiinflammatorydietary F.suspense extract supplementation as a chlortetracycline substitute under non-challenge conditions enhanced performance via the improvement of nutrient digestibility, antioxidant status, anti-inflammatory function, and intestinal morphology in broilersS Long et al., 2020