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News 662 views last update:6 Aug 2012

Effect feed on bacterial intestinal diseases

The animal sciences group in the Netherlands has published a new report: The effect of feed composition on bacterial intestinal diseases in pigs.

The report is a literature study to gain more insights in the role of feed in pig enteric bacterial diseases dysentery (Brachyspira hyodysenteriae), colitis (Brachyspira pilosicoli), ileitis (Lawsonia intracellularis) and salmonellosis (Salmonella typhimurium). 

NSP fraction
Controlling enteric bacterial diseases can be done by controlling the carbohydrate fraction in the diet. This fraction contains mono-, di- and oligosaccharides and two polysaccharides, starch and non-starch polysaccharides (NSP). Australian research shows a reduction in the development of dysentery by diets with a low amount of soluble NSP and a low amount of RS (resident starch) limiting fermentation in the large intestine, for example high digestible diets based on animal proteins and cooked white rice. However, this has not been confirmed by European and Canadian researchers.

High digestible diets
Danish work shows a reduction of dysentery by (fermented) feeds, with or without soybean, lowering the large intestinal pH. Also a non-carbohydrate, conjugated linoleic acid, may reduce the development of dysentery. As for dysentery, Australian research shows a reduction in the development of colitis by feeding diets with a low amount of soluble NSP and a low amount of RS. In contrast with the state of art on dysentery, Danish research confirms a reduction of the development of colitis by feeding high digestible diets based on animal proteins and cooked white rice.

Effect of pelleting
Non- pelleted feed may contribute in the reduction of the development of colitis. Ileitis may be reduced by fermenting a standard feed. Non-pelleted feed and a low amount of NSP in the feed may contribute in the reduction of the development of ileitis. The risk of sub-clinical Salmonella infections is reduced when a coarsely in stead of a finely ground feed is used or a non-pelleted in stead of a pelleted feed is used. Also liquid feeding reduces the risk of sub-clinical Salmonella infections.

Australian research shows that feeding high digestible diets based on animal proteins and cooked white rice reduces Salmonella infections. Feed, and especially carbohydrate composition, may affect the development of enteric bacterial diseases. Also the kind of feed ingredients (soybean or not) may be an issue, as shown by the effect of an organic feed with typical non-conventional ingredients on the development of dysentery. Besides feed composition, also feed treatment (milling size, pelletizing, fermentation) is important. A more coarse grinding, no pelletizing and fermentation may be preferable.

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-The importance of microflora management

Related website:
Animal Sciences Group

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