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Abstract

Whole genome evaluation of quantitative traits using suitable statistical methods enables researchers to predict genomic breeding values (GEBVs) more accurately. Recent studies suggested that the ability of methods in terms of predictive performance may depend on the genetic architecture of traits. Therefore, when choosing a statistical method, it is essential to consider the genetic architecture of the target traits. Herein, the performance of parametric methods i.e. GBLUP and BayesB and non-parametric methods i.e. Bagging GBLUP and Random Forest (RF) were compared for traits with different genetic architecture. Three scenarios of genetic architecture, including purely Additive (Add), purely Epistasis (Epis) and Additive-Dominance-Epistasis (ADE) were considered. To this end, an animal genome composed of five chromosomes, each chromosome harboring 1000 SNPs and four QTL was simulated. Predictive accuracies in the first generation of testing set under Additive genetic architectures for GBLUP, BayesB, Baging GBLUP and RF were 0.639, 0.731, 0.633 and 0.548, respectively, and were 0.278, 0.330, 0.275 and 0.444 under purely Epistatic genetic architectures. Corresponding values for the Additive-Dominance-Epistatic structure also were 0.375, 0.448, 0.369 and 0.458, respectively. The results showed that genetic architecture has a great impact on prediction accuracy of genomic evaluation methods. When genetic architecture was purely Additive, parametric methods and Bagging GBLUP were better than RF, whereas under Epistatic and Additive-Dominance-Epistatic genetic architectures, RF delivered better predictive performance than the other statistical methods.

Abstract

Thirty-two lactating Boer goats (35.2 ± 1.4 kg body weight) were grouped into control and three treatment groups in completely randomised design. In treatment groups, supplementation was done as a mixture of 5 g Chlorella vulgaris + 4.5 mg of supplemental Cu/kg diet from CuSO4 (Alg5 treatment), 10 g C. vulgaris + 9 mg of supplemental Cu/kg diet (Alg10 treatment), or a mixture of 15 g C. vulgaris + 13.5 mg of supplemental Cu/kg diet (Alg15 treatment). Treatments did not affect feed intake; however, Alg10 treatment increased (P<0.001) nutrient digestibility. Treatments did not affect ruminal pH, ammonia-N, butyrate; however, the Alg10 treatment increased (P<0.01) ruminal total volatile fatty acids, propionate and acetate concentrations. Without affecting other blood measurements, the Alg10 treatment quadratically increased (P<0.001) serum glucose and Cu. The Alg10 treatments increased (P<0.001) daily milk production and the concentration of fat, and enhanced milk (feed) efficiency. The Alg10 treatment decreased (P<0.05) milk saturated fatty acids and the atherogenic index, and increased the proportions of total conjugated linoleic acids, C18:1n9t, odd fatty acids and total unsaturated fatty acids compared with the control treatment. Present study concluded that inclusion of a mixture of 10 g C. vulgaris + 9 mg Cu/kg diet in the diet of lactating Boer goats enhanced nutrient digestibility, ruminal fermentation, milk production, feed efficiency as well as milk nutritive value. Increasing the dose of the mixture to 15 g C. vulgaris + 13.5 mg Cu/kg diet is not recommended in the diet of lactating Boer goats.

Abstract

This study evaluated the effects of curcumin dietary supplementation on growth, physiology, carcass characteristics and meat quality in lambs. Thirty-two male Lacaune lambs (15.6 ± 0.63 kg, 60 ± 2.8 days of age) were randomly allocated in 16 pens (four treatments of four replicates with two lambs each) for 30 days. The animals were assigned to the following treatments: T0, T100, T200 and T300, representing 0, 100, 200 and 300 mg of curcumin/kg of concentrate, respectively. Curcumin dietary supplementation increased (P = 0.02) weight gain; on regression analysis, 315.1 mg curcumin/kg of concentrate was the dosage that provided the greatest weight gain. T200 and T300 lambs had lower (P = 0.04) erythrocytes numbers; T100 and T300 lambs had lower (P = 0.01) leukocyte numbers and T300 lambs had lower (P = 0.04) lymphocyte numbers, compared to T0 lambs. Globulin levels were significantly greater in the T200 group (P = 0.04) only on day 15 but not day 30; levels of total protein were significantly higher (P = 0.01) only in T200 and T300 group on day 15 and only in T200 group on d 30. Gamma-glutamyltransferase concentrations tended to be lower (P = 0.08) in T100, T200 and T300 group on d 15, and only in the T100 group on d 30. Curcumin dietary supplementation increased (P = 0.01) the serum activity of antioxidant enzymes and reduced (P = 0.01) levels of reactive oxygen species. In meat samples, T200 and T300 had greater total antioxidant capacity (P = 0.03) and lower (P = 0.01) lipoperoxidation rates. In carcasses, T300 lambs had greater (P ≤ 0.02) cooling weight losses and yields than did T0 lambs. Curcumin dietary supplementation also reduced (P ≤ 0.03) redness and yellowness. T200 and T300 lambs had fewer (P = 0.01) cooking losses and T200 lambs had greater (P = 0.03) water holding capacity than did T0 lambs. These findings suggest that curcumin dietary supplementation improves growth and antioxidant responses, as well as influencing meat quality in lambs.

Abstract

The rearing of piglets is the most difficult period in the pigs’ production because of their poorly developed digestive system and the low activity of digestive enzymes. Problems in nutrition and stress cause some disorders in the functioning of the digestive system leading to diarrhea and the mortality of piglets. Starting in 2006 in the EU, a total ban on antibiotics in their use as growth promoters was introduced. Since then, new and safe feed additives have been sought in order to replace antibiotics. Organic and inorganic acids as well as their salts were recognized as effective and safe additives. Due to their properties, they can improve feed palatability and digestibility, reduce the buffer capacity of feed, impact the development and functioning of the pig’s digestive system and improve the health and growth parameters. However, the effectiveness of acids is related to their qualitative and quantitative share in the feed additive. In this review, some strategies for using organic acids, their mixtures and also some new multi-component products will be discussed.

Abstract

The present study investigated possible effects of dietary malic acid on the expression of immunity, antioxidant and growth related genes expression as well as skin mucus immune parameters in common carp. Common carp (Cyprinus carpio) fingerlings were fed diets supplemented with different levels (0 [control], 0.5%, 1%, 2%) of malic acid (MA) for 60 days. The results revealed highest expression levels of immune-related genes (tnf-alpha, il1b, il8 and lyz) in skin of common carp fed 2% MA (P < 0.05). Regarding 1% MA treatment comparison with control group, significant difference was noticed just in case of lyz (P < 0.05). Evaluation of growth related genes expression revealed no significant difference between treatments (P > 0.05). The study of antioxidant related genes (gsta and gpx) in common carp skin fed with MA, showed significant difference between treated groups and control (P < 0.05). Carps fed with 2% MA had highest alkaline phosphatase activity in skin mucus compared other treated groups and control (P < 0.05). There were no significant difference between 0.5% and 1% and control (P > 0.05). The study of total protein and total immunoglobulin (Ig) in common carp skin musus revealed no alteration following MA treatment (P > 0.05). The present data demonstrated that feeding with MA altered immune and antioxidant genes expression in skin mucus of common carp.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to determine whether dietary supplementation with zinc oxide nanoparticales (NP-ZnO) as a substitute for the conventional ZnO affects the intestinal digestibility of selected minerals, growth performance and meat quality in turkeys. The replacement of ZnO with NP-ZnO had no effect on the intestinal digestibility of Zn, Cu, Fe and Ca, whereas the lowest dose of supplemental Zn reduced Zn digestibility. The applied inclusion levels and sources of Zn had no effect on the growth performance (except the feed intake) of turkeys, including liveability. No differences in the relative weights of the heart, spleen and bursa of Fabricius (except the liver), or the weights of the femur and tibia were found between the dietary treatments. Neither the dose nor the source of supplemental Zn influenced carcass dressing percentage or the share of breast, thigh and drumstick muscles in the carcass. In comparison with the highest and moderate doses of Zn, the lowest inclusion level of Zn contributed to increased yellowness of breast meat (P=0.005). The analyzed doses and sources of supplemental Zn exerted varied effects on the redox status of fresh and frozen breast meat. In conclusion, the growth performance of turkeys, carcass yield and composition as well as the redox status of fresh and frozen breast meat were generally similar, regardless of the dietary source and level of Zn. The beneficial effect of Zn addition at 100 mg/kg was improved Zn and Ca digestibility, and increased redness of breast meat.

Abstract

Testing blood and milk parameters as well as analysing the relationships among these markers is very useful for monitoring the internal homeostasis and health in high-yielding dairy cows during various production periods. The aim of the study was to assess the correlations (relationships) among macro-minerals, such as calcium (Ca), inorganic phosphorus (P), magnesium (Mg), other selected bone profile markers, such as total protein (TP), albumin, activity of alkaline phosphatase (ALP) measured in serum and selected milk components such as number of somatic cells (SCC), colony-forming units (CFU), milk fat (MF), milk protein (MP), milk lactose (ML), dry matter (DM), non-fat dry matter (FDM) and milk production in late-lactation cows. Both blood and milk samples were collected from 11 clinically healthy milking cows during the late-lactation period. The cows were examined once a day for 3 consecutive days resulting in 33 sets of blood and milk samples for laboratory and statistical analysis. Significant correlations were observed between: Mg and MP, Mg and FDM, ALP and SCC, TP and SCC, TP and MP, TP and FDM, albumin and MP, albumin and FDM, P and Mg, Mg and albumin, and between TP and albumin. When monitoring macro-mineral homeostasis and mammary gland health, especially in intensively fed high-yielding dairy cows correlations between these markers should be considered. The revealed correlations can allow for deeper comparative laboratory diagnostics of homeostasis and can be especially useful for laboratory monitoring of the potential risk of subclinical macro-mineral deficiency in high-yielding dairy cows.

Abstract

This study was conducted to examine the effects of the replacement of fish meal with defatted and fermented soybean meals on the growth performance, apparent nutrient digestibility, bile acid levels, and digestive enzyme activity of pompano Trachinotus blochii (Lacepède, 1801). Four diets were formulated to replace 40% of fish meal with defatted soybean meal (SBM), SBM fermented by Bacillus subtilis TH2 (FSBM1) or SBM fermented by B. subtilis B3 (FSBM2). The diets are denoted as follows: FMD (fish meal-based diet, used as a Control), SBMD (fish meal replaced by SBM diet), FSBM1D (fish meal replaced by FSBM1 diet), and FSBM2D (fish meal replaced by FSBM2 diet). Thirty fingerling pompanos with an initial body weight of 15.3 ± 0.3 g were allocated to each of eight indoor polyvinyl chloride tanks (500 L capacity), with two replicate tanks per dietary treatment. For 8 weeks, fish were hand-fed the experimental diets to apparent satiation twice daily. The final body weight, weight gain, specific growth rate, and feed conversion ratio of fish fed SBMD and FSBM1D were significantly inferior to those in fish fed FMD (P<0.05). These parameters were not significantly different between the FSBM2D and FMD experimental groups (P>0.05). Fish fed SBMD showed significantly lower plasma total cholesterol, whole body lipids, intestinal total bile acids and lipase activity than those fed FMD, whereas no significant differences were observed among fish fed FSBM1D, FSBM2D, and FMD. Trypsin activity and protein apparent digestibility coefficient were not significantly affected by the experimental diets. However, lipid apparent digestibility coefficient was significantly lower in fish fed SBMD and FSBM1D rather than FMD. There was no significant difference in lipid apparent digestibility coefficient between the FMD and FSBM2D experimental groups. The results indicated that SBM decreased bile acid levels, lipase activity, lipid digestibility, and growth performance in pompano fish. These parameters were increased by the inclusion of B. subtilis B3 fermented SBM in the diet, thus suggesting that fermentation of SBM with B. subtilis B3 may be an effective way to improve bile acid levels, lipase activity, lipid digestibility, and growth performance of pompano fed an SBM-based diet.

Abstract

The aim of this study was to compare the quality of clutches and reproduction results of two groups of Roman snails (Helix pomatia) from the same local population, laying eggs simultaneously in semi-natural farm conditions and in a natural habitat. The study material were Roman snails aged 2 or more years which had entered the third phenological season of their life and thus the first season of sexual maturity. Observations were conducted at an earthen enclosure in a greenhouse belonging to the experimental farm for edible snails at the National Research Institute of Animal Reproduction in Balice near Kraków (Poland) as well as at a site where a local population naturally occurs in the uncultivated park surrounding the Radziwiłł Palace. In the June-July season, differences among such parameters as weight of clutch, number of eggs in clutch, mean egg weight, and hatchling percentage when compared to the total number of eggs in the clutch were compared. It was determined that clutches of eggs from the natural population laid in the greenhouse were of lesser weight (P<0.01), contained fewer eggs (P<0.05), and the mean weight of individual eggs was less (P<0.05) than in clutches laid simultaneously in a natural habitat. Both in the greenhouse and the natural habitat, in the first phase of laying eggs (June) the weight of the clutch and number of eggs its contained were greater than in the second phase (July). However, only for snails laying eggs in the greenhouse were these differences statistically significant (P<0.05) and highly significant (P<0.01), respectively. Statistically significant differences were not observed in hatchling percentage between eggs laid in the greenhouse and the natural habitat. The lower number of eggs laid in the farmed conditions of the greenhouse was successfully compensated for by the absence of mass destruction by rodents which occurred in the natural habitat.

Abstract

The present experiment evaluated the inclusion of chelated phytogenic feed additives mixture in the diet of lactating cows for the first 3 months of lactation. A week before calving, thirty multiparous Friesian cows were divided into three treatments in a complete randomized design and fed a basal diet without supplementation (Control treatment), or the control diet supplemented with chelated phytogenic additives at 3 g (PHY3 treatment), or at 6 g/cow/d (PHY6 treatment). Menthol, levomenthol, β-linaloolm, anethole, hexadecanoic acid and pmenthane were the principal compounds identified in the additives mixture. Milk production, total solid, protein, fat, and lactose were increased with PHY3, but decreased by PHY6 (P<0.01). Whereas the PHY3 treatment increased (P<0.05) milk contents of Ca and Zn, PHY3 and PHY6 treatments increased (P<0.05) milk Fe and Mn concentrations. Though the PHY3 treatment increased (P<0.05) nutrient digestibility, the PHY6 treatment decreased (P<0.05) the digestibility of organic matter, crude protein and neutral detergent fiber. The PHY3 treatment increased (P<0.05) ruminal volatile fatty acids (VFA) concentration and proportional acetate and propionate and decreased butyrate, while the PHY6 treatment decreased ruminal VFA concentration and proportional acetate. The PHY3 treatment increased (P<0.05) serum total protein, glucose, total antioxidant capacity, and the concentrations of Ca and Zn. Both PHY3 and PHY6 treatment decreased (P<0.05) the concentrations of serum triglycerides, and cholesterol. Daily inclusion of 3 g/cow of chelated feed additives mixture in diet of lactating cows improved milk production and ruminal fermentation, but additives dose of 6 g/cow/d had negative impact on cows’ performance.