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Effect of preventive or curative dietary supplementation with functional amino acids on growing pigs under sanitary challenge

Grant number: 23/08305-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)
Effective date (Start): November 01, 2023
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Animal Husbandry - Animal Nutrition and Feeding
Principal Investigator:Luciano Hauschild
Grantee:Ismael França
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Agrárias e Veterinárias (FCAV). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Jaboticabal. Jaboticabal , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:18/15559-7 - Precision nutrition for sanitary challenged pigs reared in hot climate areas, AP.JP2
Associated scholarship(s):23/16504-0 - Effect of preventive or curative supplementation with a blend of functional amino acids on the performance and economic viability of growing pigs under sanitary challenge, BE.EP.DD


The activation of the immune system requires a greater supply of amino acids (AA), whether ingested through diet or metabolized from muscle tissues. Challenging hygienic-sanitary conditions and stressful factors result in recurrent induction of the immune response, which can be considered one of the main factors contributing to the performance variation of animals, especially in the early growth phase. In this context, amino acid-based nutritional strategies capable of attenuating a sanitary challenge condition may result in reduced performance variation. Therefore, the objectives of this project are (I) to evaluate the effect of preventive and/or curative dietary supplementation with functional amino acids (Threonine, Methionine and Tryptophan) on the performance, body composition, physiological and metabolic responses of growing pigs under sanitary challenge; and (II) to assess the residual effect of AA supplementation on weight gain and body composition in the finishing phase. One hundred and twenty male piglets, recently weaned, from a high biosecurity farm, will be used in two experiments (60 pigs/experiment) to evaluate different preventive supplementation strategies with functional AAs. In Experiment I, 60 piglets will be divided into two groups (n=30) based on body weight at the beginning of the growth phase. One group will be fed a control diet (CN, formulated to meet NRC (2012) recommendations), while the other group will receive a diet with additional supplementation of amino acids (AA+, 20% in Trp:Lys, Thr:Lys, and Met+Cys:Lys ratios) preventively for seven days. On the eighth day after the start of preventive supplementation, the pigs will be randomly allocated into blocks based on body weight to one of four treatments: pigs fed the CN diet during the nursery phase will either continue with the CN diet (CN/CN; n=15) or switch to the AA+ diet (CN/AA+; n=15) during the challenge period, while pigs fed the AA+ diet in the nursery phase will either switch to the CN diet (AA+/CN; n=15) or continue with the AA+ diet (AA+/AA+; n=15). In Experiment II, sixty pigs will be divided into two groups (n=30) based on body weight after weaning, and throughout the nursery phase, one control group will be fed the CN diet, while the other group will be fed an AA+ diet. At the end of the nursery phase, the animals will be transferred to a growing facility, where their body weight will be used to form complete blocks for random allocation to one of four treatments, as described in Experiment I. The sanitary challenge during the growth phase will last for 4 weeks. At the beginning of the growth phase (D0), in Experiments I and II, the animals will be subjected to a sanitary challenge to mimic conditions of poor hygiene, batch mixing, and inoculation with Salmonella Typhimurium (ST). After the challenge period, all animals will receive the same CN diet, and the facilities will be cleaned daily until the end of the finishing phase. Each treatment will have 15 replicates, and each animal will be considered the experimental unit. The variables to be studied include performance, feeding behavior, body composition (evaluated with the use of double X-ray absorptiometry equipment - DXA), physiological and metabolic indicators during the challenge phase. (AU)

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