Effect of glutamine and/or probiotic (Enterococcus faecium) feed supplementation on piglet performance, intestines structure, and antibacterial activity

https://doi.org/10.17221/20/2016-CJASCitation:Hanczakowska E., Świątkiewicz M., Natonek-Wiśniewska M., Okoń K. (2017): Effect of glutamine and/or probiotic (Enterococcus faecium) feed supplementation on piglet performance, intestines structure, and antibacterial activity. Czech J. Anim. Sci., 62: 313-322.
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The effect of glutamine and/or probiotic (Enterococcus feacium) supplements on piglet performance, intestines structure, and microbial status was estimated on 181 piglets (16 litters) of Polish Landrace. The piglets were allocated to 2 groups with 8 litters in each, kept in group pens, and fed a standard feed mixture (negative control, group C) or the same mixture supplemented with 2% of glutamine (Group GT). In each group half the animals received Cylactin® added in the amount of 0.35 × 109 CFU per kg feed. The probiotic consists of dehydrated cells of Enterococcus faecium strain NCIMB 10415. Feed and water were available ad libitum. The piglets were weaned at 28 days of life. At 60 days of life, 6 piglets from each subgroup were slaughtered and their intestines were taken for analysis. Digesta from the digestive tract was removed and the length and weight of particular parts of the intestines were measured. The structure of ileum mucosal epithelium was examined. The acidity of the digesta and the short chain fatty acids (SCFA) content of chyme from the jejunum and caecum were analyzed. Escherichia coli and Clostridium perfringens counts in these parts of the intestines were also estimated. At the beginning of the experiment, the glutamine significantly improved and the probiotic lowered the piglet body weight gains. Later the probiotic improved but the glutamine lowered weight gains. There was no difference in feed intake or feed utilization. The intestines of the piglets receiving glutamine were lighter and shorter than those of the control ones. The total content of SCFA was significantly higher in the caecum of the piglets fed probiotic than in the control animals. Supplements had no effect on villi height, but both had strong antibacterial activity against Escherichia coli and Clostridium perfringens. There was no synergy in the effect of glutamine and probiotic.
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