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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: ENHANCING ANIMAL WELL-BEING, IMMUNOCOMPETENCE, AND PERFORMANCE IN SWINE AND BEEF CATTLE Title: Novel use of lipid-producing bacteria to increase circulating triglycerides in swine

Authors
item Donaldson, Janet -
item Carroll, Jeffery
item Schmidt, Ty -
item Callaway, Todd
item Grissett, Jessica -
item Sanchez, Nicole

Submitted to: Journal of Animal Science Supplement
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: November 27, 2012
Publication Date: July 1, 2013
Citation: Donaldson, J.R., Carroll, J.A., Schmidt, T.B., Callaway, T.R., Grissett, J., Sanchez, N.C. 2013. Novel use of lipid-producing bacteria to increase circulating triglycerides in swine. Journal of Animal Science Supplement. 92(E-Suppl. 1):22. (Abstract #59).

Technical Abstract: Weanling pigs are at a high risk of succumbing to illness primarily due to an insufficient supply of available energy, and therefore, a weakened immune system. Solutions have been presented to supplement feed with alternate energy sources, yet limitations still arise with the utilization of these sources by pigs due to their relatively immature gastrointestinal (GI) systems. In this study, we evaluated whether providing bacteria that produce large quantities of triglycerides (TAGs) to swine could increase the levels of circulating TAGs, and thus, available energy. Thirty-six weaned pigs (30 days of age) obtained from a commercial farm were housed in individual pens equipped with feeders and nipple waterers and assigned to 1 of 3 treatment groups (n = 12/group), balanced by body weight. After a 2-week acclimation period, experimental treatments were applied for 5 consecutive days. Treatment 1 consisted of orally inoculating pigs with the bacterium Rhodococcus opacus (Ro; 100 billion CFU), which produces 76% of its cellular weight in TAGs. Treatment 2 consisted of orally inoculating pigs with an alternate form of Ro (100 billion CFU) that secretes TAGs into the surrounding environment. Treatment 3 consisted of orally dosing pigs with PBS. Serum samples were collected every 6 hours and analyzed for non-esterified fatty acids, TAGs, free glycerol, and glucose levels. Fecal samples were collected daily to assess shedding of Ro by viable plate counts. At the conclusion of the trial, GI contents were collected and analyzed for Ro colonization patterns. The data indicate that providing pigs with either form of Ro increases circulating TAGs that can be used as a readily available energy source in weaned pigs. Both forms of Ro were present in the GI tract with minimal shedding observed, suggesting that both forms are capable of colonizing within the GI tract. These data indicate that lipid-producing bacteria can be used as a source of utilizable lipids by weanling pigs and could potentially decrease detrimental effects associated with illness and reduced feed intake during this transitional period. Further research is needed to determine whether this correlates with improved immune function in the presence of pathogens. This is the first data to demonstrate the potential use of a non-pathogenic bacterium to improve the health, well-being, and overall productivity of swine.

Last Modified: 11/25/2014