Submitted to: Journal of Animal Science
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/29/2007
Publication Date: 2/1/2008
Citation: Weber, T.E., Kerr, B.J. 2008. Effect of sodium butyrate on growth performance and response to lipopolysaccharide in weanling pigs. Journal of Animal Science. 86:442-450. Interpretive Summary: Due to traditional feedstuffs for swine being diverted to biofuels, feed costs for pork production have increased dramatically. Consequently, pork producers are seeking ways to increase the efficiency of feed utilization. Sodium butyrate has been shown to reduce gastrointestinal inflammation and, subsequently, may increase pig growth and feed efficiency. Data obtained in this research show that sodium butyrate did not increase growth efficiency in weanling pigs, but did regulate the physiological response to inflammation. The research results described in this report provide researchers at universities, feed companies, allied industries, and swine production facilities data showing that feeding sodium butyrate to weanling pigs does not increase growth performance, but may alter the inflammatory response.
Technical Abstract: Two experiments were conducted to determine the effects of dietary sodium butyrate on growth performance and response to E. coli. lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in weanling pigs. In the first 28 d experiment, 180 pigs (initial BW 6.3 kg) were fed 0, 0.05, 0.1, 0.2, and 0.4% sodium butyrate, or 110 mg/kg dietary tylosin. There was no effect of dietary sodium butyrate or tylosin on overall G:F, but there was a linear trend (P < 0.07) towards decreased ADFI and ADG as levels of sodium butyrate increased. In a second 28 d experiment, 108 pigs (initial BW 6.3 kg) were assigned to three dietary treatments: 1) no antibiotics; 2) 0.2% sodium butyrate; or 3) 55 mg/kg carbadox. On d 14, a subset of pigs from the no antibiotic and butyrate treatment groups were challenged with E. coli LPS or injected with sterile saline in a 2x2 factorial arrangement (± LPS challenge; ± dietary butyrate; n = 6 pigs/treatment group). Four hours after LPS challenge, blood samples were obtained, and samples of LM, liver, and ileum were collected for gene expression analysis. Serum samples were analyzed for IL-6, tumor necrosis factor alpha(TNFalpha), alpha1-acid glycoprotein, cortisol, IGF-I, insulin, and metabolites. Tissue cytokine and IGF-I gene expression were measured by real-time PCR. Feeding diets containing sodium butyrate or carbadox did not alter ADG or ADFI compared to pigs fed the control diet. From d 0 to d 14, pigs fed diets containing 0.2% sodium butyrate had decreased (P < 0.05) ADG and tended (P < 0.06) to have decreased G:F compared to animals fed diets containing carbadox. Challenge with LPS increased (P < 0.05) serum cytokines and cortisol and decreased (P < 0.05) serum glucose and triglyceride concentrations. Injection with LPS increased (P < 0.05) hepatic IL-6 and TNFalpha mRNA expression, increased (P < 0.05) LM TNFalpha mRNA content, and decreased (P < 0.05) IGF-I mRNA in LM. For serum cortisol, there was an interaction (P < 0.05) between dietary butyrate and LPS. The increase in serum cortisol due to LPS was greater (P < 0.05) in pigs fed butyrate than pigs fed the control diet. There tended (P < 0.10) to be an interaction between LPS and diet for butyrate to increase muscle IL-6 expression. Carbadox did not alter steady-state cytokine or IGF-I mRNAs or serum metabolites, but did decrease (P < 0.05) serum TNFalpha. These data indicate that dietary sodium butyrate does not enhance growth performance, but may regulate the response to inflammatory stimuli in weanling pigs.