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Effect of maternal supplementation with seaweed extracts on growth performance and aspects of gastrointestinal health of newly weaned piglets after challenge with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli K88

  • G. Heim (a1), T. Sweeney (a2), C. J. O'Shea (a1), D. N. Doyle (a1) and J. V. O'Doherty (a1)...

Abstract

In the present study, a 2 × 2 factorial arrangement was conducted to investigate the effect of maternal supplementation with seaweed extracts ( − SWE v. +SWE, n 20) from day 83 of gestation until weaning (day 28) on post-weaning (PW) growth performance, faecal score, faecal enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) toxin quantification, intestinal histology and cytokine mRNA of unchallenged and ETEC-challenged pigs. Pigs were ETEC challenged on day 9 PW. There was a maternal treatment × challenge (SWE × ETEC) interaction effect on growth performance and faecal score (P< 0·05). Pigs from SWE-supplemented sows and ETEC-challenged (SE) had higher average daily gain (ADG) during 0–13 d PW and reduced faecal score during 0–72 h post-challenge than those from basal-fed sows and ETEC-challenged (BE) (P< 0·05). However, there was no difference between unchallenged pigs from the SWE-supplemented sows (SC) and basal-fed sows (BC) (P>0·10). Pigs from the SWE-supplemented sows had reduced heat-labile enterotoxin gene copy numbers than those from the basal-fed sows (P< 0·05). Maternal SWE supplementation increased the villus height in the ileum of pigs (P< 0·05). There was a SWE × ETEC interaction effect (P< 0·05) on IL-6 mRNA and a SWE × gastrointestinal (GI) region interaction effect (P< 0·05) on transforming growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1) and TNF-α mRNA. IL-6 mRNA was down-regulated in SC pigs than BC pigs (P< 0·05). However, there was no difference in IL-6 mRNA between SE and BE pigs. The mRNA of TGF-β1 and TNF-α was down-regulated in the colon of pigs from the SWE-supplemented sows compared with those from the basal-fed sows (P< 0·05). However, there was no difference in TGF-β1 and TNF-α mRNA in the ileum between the pigs from the SWE-supplemented sows and basal-fed sows. In conclusion, maternal SWE supplementation improves ADG and the aspects of GI health of weaned pigs following an ETEC challenge.

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Corresponding author

* Corresponding author: J. V. O'Doherty, fax +353 1 7161103, email john.vodoherty@ucd.ie

References

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Effect of maternal supplementation with seaweed extracts on growth performance and aspects of gastrointestinal health of newly weaned piglets after challenge with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli K88

  • G. Heim (a1), T. Sweeney (a2), C. J. O'Shea (a1), D. N. Doyle (a1) and J. V. O'Doherty (a1)...

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