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Issue Editors: Magdalena Bielska, Jerzy Pilawski, Katarzyna Skupniewicz

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Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
2300-8733
First Published
25 Nov 2011
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English

Search

Volume 17 (2017): Issue 3 (July 2017)

Journal Details
Format
Journal
eISSN
2300-8733
First Published
25 Nov 2011
Publication timeframe
4 times per year
Languages
English

Search

21 Articles

Review

Open Access

Dietary supplementation of probiotics in poultry exposed to heat stress – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 591 - 604

Abstract

Abstract

Heat-related stress has become a serious problem in poultry industry along with the global temperatures rise. Heat stress causes detrimental effects on physiology, immunology and microbiology resulting in abnormalities and impaired performances of birds. Several nutritional strategies have been conducted to counteract the detrimental effects of heat stress in poultry, including dietary supplementation of probiotics. This strategy has been proposed to ameliorate the intestinal ecosystem, physiological conditions and immune system, leading to the improved performance and health of birds subjected to heat stress. This review presents the potential benefits of probiotics against heat stress in poultry from the viewpoint of intestinal microbial ecology, morphology and structure, physiological conditions, immune system and production performances. The possible mechanisms through which probiotics may give beneficial impacts on heat-stressed birds are also discussed along with the data reporting the possible drawbacks of using probiotics in heat-stressed poultry.

Keywords

  • poultry
  • heat stress
  • probiotics
  • performance
  • health
Open Access

The natural feed additives as immunostimulants in monogastric animal nutrition – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 605 - 625

Abstract

Abstract

Probiotics, prebiotics, and phytobiotics could be a possible solution as immunostimulants in monogastric animal nutrition. Beneficial effects of application thereof in animals are determined by many factors, e.g. the type of the probiotic strain, probiotic compounds, or plant species used as a supplement. A significant role is also played by the animal species, dosage, and the time and method of administration. The activity of these compounds is primarily focused on prevention of pathogen infections and, consequently, improvement of animal welfare. Probiotics compete with pathogenic bacteria by covering the intestinal epithelium mucosa, thereby interrupting pathogen colonization in the gastrointestinal tract. Supplementation with probiotics, prebiotics, and phytobiotics can also induce positive changes in the intestinal morphology, e.g. elongation of villi or deepening of intestinal crypts. In a majority of cases, they also modulate the immune response of the host. They mobilise the cellular components of the innate immune system (macrophages and heterophils), which defend the animal organism against gastrointestinal infection. Another possibility is the synthesis and release of pro-inflammatory cytokines that modulate adaptive immunity or stabilization of the intestinal microbiome. The main target of immunomodulatory feed additives is reduction of local inflammation, enhancement of the function of the immune system, a substantial impact on the health status of livestock animals, and improvement of their health status and production performance.

Keywords

  • broilers
  • pigs
  • probiotics
  • prebiotics
  • phytobiotics
Open Access

Fiber substrates in the nutrition of weaned piglets – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 627 - 644

Abstract

Abstract

The present review summarizes the results of 37 experiments in which different types and levels (from 0.5 to 29.7%) of fibrous supplements were used in the formulation of diets for weaned piglets. Diets were supplemented with different sources of insoluble dietary fiber (iDF), soluble dietary fiber (sDF), or mixed DF sources. Most of the applied DF sources decreased the ileal and fecal organic matter digestibility, and they often lowered crude protein digestibility. A moderate addition (1.5-8%) of iDF sources increased average daily feed intake (ADFI) and, frequently, average daily gains (ADG). Sources of sDF as well as high inclusion levels of fiber-rich feeds tended to decrease ADFI and ADG. Improved fecal consistency, decreased diarrhea incidence and antibiotic interventions were confirmed in piglets fed diets with added lignocellulose, cooked or raw oat hulls and wheat bran. The dietary inclusion of iDF rather than sDF sources improved gastrointestinal tract (GIT) development, enzyme activity and gut morphology. An increase in the counts of beneficial gut microbiota and the concentrations of short-chain fatty acids was stimulated by diets with addition iDF or sDF sources. Such diets also slowed down proteolytic fermentation which negatively affects the colonic mucosa. Some research findings indicate that iDF sources improve intestinal barrier function. The analyzed experimental data suggest that the addition of 1.5-2% of a lignocellulose preparation, 2% of oat hulls, 4-8% of coarse wheat bran to diets for weaned piglets may be recommended to promote GIT development and health, and to improve growth performance.

Keywords

  • fibrous feeds
  • digestibility
  • performance
  • diarrhea
  • gut health
  • weaned piglets
Open Access

Infectious and non-infectious factors associated with leg disorders in poultry – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 645 - 669

Abstract

Abstract

Broiler chicken welfare, health and performance are strictly linked with skeleton development. Lameness compromises welfare of broiler chickens and causes considerable economic loss since lame birds have difficulty accessing feed and water, become dehydrated and eventually die. Leg disorders are therefore considered to be one of the main factors associated with in-field mortalities between 21-42 d in broiler rearing at European poultry farms. In chickens and other farm animals, bone development is strictly correlated with dietary content of inositol hexaphosphate (IP6), as well as calcium and phosphorus availability. However, lameness is also associated with many other factors, such as diseases, genetics, species, gender, growth, aging, as well as physical loading, rearing period and management. Therefore, the aim of the current paper is to review selected noninfectious and infectious factors, which contribute to bone quality in poultry.

Keywords

  • poultry
  • leg disorders factors
  • bones
  • nutrition
  • management

Animal genetics and breeding

Open Access

Differential expression of miR-145, miR-429 and its target genes in partial reproductive tissues of swine with high and low litter size

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 671 - 681

Abstract

Abstract

To justify the function of miRNAs in reproductive regulation in swine, the expression of miR-145, miR-429 and their related genes were studied in reproductive tissues of sows. Wannan black pig and Yorkshire pigs with extremely high (n=6) and low (n=6) litter size were sampled, and real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) was performed on tissue samples from ovaries, uterus, oviduct, hypothalamus, and pituitary. The results indicated that miR-145, miR-429, and zinc finger E-box binding homeobox 1 gene (ZEB1) were expressed significantly different in Wannan black pig and Yorkshire pigs. In pigs with different fecundity, miR-145 in the uterus was expressed significantly lower in pigs with high litter size, than in pigs with low litter size. The miR-429 expression in the oviduct and pituitary of pigs with high litter size was significantly higher compared with tissues sampled from pigs with low litter size. The ZEB1 expression in the pituitary was lower in pigs with high litter size in comparison to pigs with low litter size, while luteinizing hormone beta subunit (LHβ) showed the opposite pattern of expression. In conclusion, miR-145 and miR-429 were differently expressed in pigs with high and low litter size and might have a role in affecting litter size of sows.

Keywords

  • litter size
  • miR-429
  • miR-145
  • swine
  • ZEB1
Open Access

Genomic prediction by considering genotype × environment interaction using different genomic architectures

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 683 - 701

Abstract

Abstract

In this study, accuracies of genomic prediction across various scenarios were compared using single- trait and multiple-trait animal models to detect genotype × environment (G × E) interaction based on REML method. The simulated high and low linkage disequilibrium (HLD and LLD) genome consisted of 15,000 and 50,000 SNP chip applications with 300 and 600 QTLs controlling the trait of interest. The simulation was done to create the genetic correlations between the traits in 4 environments and heritabilities of the traits were 0.20, 0.25, 0.30 and 0.35 in environments 1, 2, 3 and 4, respectively. Two strategies were used to predict the accuracy of genomic selection for cows without phenotypes. In the first strategy, phenotypes for cows in three environments were kept as a training set and breeding values for all animals were estimated using three-trait model. In the second one, only 25, 50 or 75% of records in the fourth environment and all the records in the other three environments were used to predict GBV for non-phenotyped cows in the environment 4. For the first strategy, the highest accuracy of 0.695 was realized in scenario HLD with 600 QTL and 50K SNP chip for the fourth environment and the lowest accuracy of 0.495 was obtained in scenario LLD with 600QTL and 15K SNP chips for the first environment. Generally, the accuracy of prediction increased significantly (P<0.05) with increasing the number of markers, heritability and the genetic correlation between the traits, but no significant difference was observed between scenarios with 300 and 600 QTL. In comparison with models without G × E interaction, accuracies of the GBV for all environments increased when using multi-trait models. The results showed that the level of LD, number of animals in training set and genetic correlation across environments play important roles if G × E interaction exists. In conclusion, G × E interaction contributes to understanding variations of quantitative trait and increasing accuracy of genomic prediction. Therefore, the interaction should be taken into account in conducting selection in various environments or across different genotypes.

Keywords

  • genomic selection
  • genotype by environment interaction
  • linkage disequilibrium
  • simulation
Open Access

Transcript variants of a region on SSC15 rich in QTLs associated with meat quality in pigs

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 703 - 715

Abstract

Abstract

A high meat percentage in the porcine carcass has been achieved as a result of selection, but it has contributed to a deterioration of pork quality. The level of intramuscular fat has significantly declined, the pork has lost its tenderness and drip loss in meat has substantially increased, which has led to a deterioration of meat flavour and its technological suitability. The recovery of good pork quality could be supported by the development of genetic markers enabling faster breeding progress. This study presents a method by using RNA-seq data that identifies new variants for a chromosome region rich in QTLs for pork quality and selects gene candidates for these traits. This work included two pig breeds: the Polish Landrace (PL) and Puławska (PUL), which differ in meat quality and fat content. The transcriptome profile was estimated for semimembranosus and longissimus dorsi muscles. Into variant calling analysis, transcripts of both muscles encoded by genes located in a region between microsatellites SW964 and SW906 (43-135.9 Mbp) in SSC15 were included. In total, 439 transcripts were searched, 2,800 gene variants were identified and 6 mutations with a high effect belonging to the frameshift variants were found (ENSSSCG00000015976, ENSSSCG00000027516, WRN and XIRP2). Moreover, several interesting significant missense variants in PDLIM3, PLCD4 and SARAF genes were detected. These genes are recommended as candidates for meat quality; however they require further investigation in an association study.

Keywords

  • pig
  • meat quality trait
  • RNA-seq
  • variant calling
  • SNP
Open Access

Condition of sows during reproductive activity depending on lipid metabolism gene (DGAT1) polymorphism

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 717 - 731

Abstract

Abstract

Mutations at gene loci associated with body lipid metabolism may affect not only carcass and meat quality traits in young animals but also the production results of mother sows. The objective of the study was to determine the effect of mutations in the DGAT1 gene, found in Polish populations of maternal breeds, on condition of gilts and later on condition and reproductive performance of sows during three reproductive cycles. The study involved 118 gilts of maternal breeds (Polish Large White (PLW ) and Polish Landrace (PL)). Gilts and subsequently sows were monitored for body weight (BW) and P2 backfat thickness over three reproductive cycles and their litters were analysed for the number and body weight of the piglets. A total of 354 litters of pigs were evaluated. In the analysed pig populations, a single mutation (A/G) in the DGAT1 gene (rs45434075) had a significant effect on deposition of subcutaneous fat only in the PLW gilts (P2G, AA,AG<GG P≤0.05 and P2F r=214 P≤0.01). As regards the G/A 3’UTR polymorphism of the DGAT1 gene (rs342152658), this mutation is negatively correlated only in the PL sows with fatness during their reproductive life and with BW of the piglets reared to 21 d of age. Sows of the DGAT1GG 3’UTR genotype had significantly lower P2F backfat thickness (P≤0.05) and, during a 21-d lactation, reared lighter piglets (P≤0.01) compared to sows of the same breed with the DGAT1AG 3’UTR genotype. The analysed traits were also affected by the interaction between mutations in the DGAT1 gene of the sows of maternal breeds (DGAT1/DGAT1 3’UTR). Sows of the DGAT1GG/GG genotype were characterised by the highest backfat thickness on selection day, and during three reproductive cycles they reared significantly more piglets compared to sows of the DGAT1AA/AG genotype. Heterozygous sows (AG/AG) reared significantly heavier piglets than sows of the AA/GG and AG/GG genotypes (P≤0.05).

Keywords

  • condition
  • rearing of piglets
  • three reproductive cycles
  • DGAT1 A/G
  • DGAT1 G/A 3’UTR

The biology, physiology, reproduction, and health

Open Access

Effect of the age of ganders on reproductive behavior and fertility in a competitive mating structure

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 733 - 746

Abstract

Abstract

This paper presents the study on determination of gander-goose mating activity in relation to age and the position of gander in social hierarchic rank. Moreover, levels of fertility (F) and testosterone (T) in different gander age groups were analyzed. The study was carried out on one-year-old geese (N = 64) and one- or two-year-old ganders (N = 16; 1♂: 4♀). Observations of mating activity (MA) were conducted during the 3-h period of the daylight (10 h), 2-3 times per week (102 h/ group/34 days). The recording was done with a digital recorder connected to cameras. Agonistic behavioral interactions between ganders were noted to determine a social hierarchic rank. The MA was described by frequency of courtship displays, copulation attempts, successful copulation (SCop), and interaction disrupted (DMI) with agonistic behavior. Fertility was evaluated after the artificial incubation (1×/week) in a commercial hatchery. The frequency of SCop, DMI, and T concentration were higher (P<0.05) for two- than one-year-old ganders. Moreover, F was higher by 11.2% for group of geese kept with two-year-old ganders. There was an effect of the gander’s rank in social hierarchy on the frequency of MA. For dominant ganders, frequency of courtship displays (1.0/times/3 h) and copulation attempts (0.8/times/3 h) were lower (P<0.05), but SCop (1.5/times/3 h) was higher (P<0.05) than for subordinate ones. Thus, in domestic goose flocks reproductive success was associated with age of ganders used in competitive mating system. This is probably a multifactor effect of interaction between sexual/social experience, T-dependent mating motivation, and efficiency of MA. It is recommended to keep one-year-old geese with older ganders (after sexual reactivation) for optimal fertility results with sex ratio adjusted to gander-gander antagonistic interaction dynamic.

Keywords

  • domestic geese
  • reproduction
  • age
  • sexual behavior
  • hierarchic rank
Open Access

Can roosters′ head ornaments serve as a criterion for their selection as a valuable reproducers?

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 747 - 755

Abstract

Abstract

It is widely practiced that before mating the roosters are selected as reproducers mainly on the basis of head ornaments appearance. Relationship between males secondary sexual traits (comb and wattles) with testes size, as all of them are testosterone-dependent traits, were examined. Measurements of head ornaments and testes from two broiler breeder lines and two laying lines of chicken were correlated. The value of fluctuating asymmetry (FA) of bilateral traits was also measured. Positive correlations were found for head ornaments and testes weight in one of broiler breeder lines. No correlations were found for males of laying lines. The degree of FA did not differ between lines, except for FA of wattle length, which was higher (P≤0.05) for one of the broiler lines. Results obtained indicated that head ornaments cannot be used as the only criterion for rooster selection as reproducers.

Keywords

  • roosters
  • head ornaments
  • secondary sexual traits
  • testes size
Open Access

Effect of PRID-Delta devices associated with shortened estrus synchronization protocols on estrous response and fertility in dairy cows

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 757 - 770

Abstract

Abstract

This study evaluated the effect of a once-used progesterone (P4) intravaginal device (PRID) associated with four different shortened P4-based estrus synchronization (ES) protocols on estrous response (ER) and pregnancy per AI (P/AI) in cyclic and acyclic lactating dairy cows. Cows (n=465) were randomly assigned to one of the following protocols: 1) 2PGG, cows were given a PRID-Delta and 100 μg GnRH i.m. at PRID insertion (day 0). The PRID was left for 5 d, and 25 mg of dinoprost (PGF) i.m. given twice at PRID removal and 24 h later; 2) 2PGGe, same treatments as 2PGG plus 500 IU of eCG i.m. at PRID removal; 3) 2PGe, same treatments as 2PGGe, except GnRH was not given at PRID insertion; 4) PGe, same treatments as 2PGe, except PGF was only given at PRID removal. A total of 258 cows received a new PRID-Delta containing 1.55 g of P4, whereas 207 cows received a once-used PRID. Estrus was determined from P4 device removal until 96 h after using an automated heat detection system. Cows in estrus were given a second GnRH at AI and those without signs of estrus by 96 h after PRID removal were given GnRH and timed-AI (TA I). All inseminations were performed by one technician with commercially available frozen-thawed semen. Ultrasonography was performed at initiation of protocol and 28-34 days post AI to determine cyclicity and pregnancy status, respectively. Cows receiving once-used P4 devices had greater ER than cows receiving a new device (59.9 vs. 50.0; P=0.029), but P/AI did not differ between P4 devices, respectively (P>0.1; 40.6 vs 40.7%). Cyclic cows were less likely to display estrus than acyclic cows by a factor of 0.66 (P=0.036). Cows subjected to the 2PGe (2.41; P<0.01) protocol were more likely to display estrus than cows subjected to the 2PGG, whereas cows subjected to the PGe protocol did not differ (0.94; P=0.8) from those in the 2PGG group. Despite differences in ER, neither cyclicity nor estrus synchronization protocol affected P/AI (overall 40.6%). In summary, cyclic cows, those given a new P4 device and those subjected to either 2PGG or PGe protocol had reduced ER. However, all the factors examined had no significant effect on P/AI. All the estrus synchronization protocols resulted in acceptable fertility.

Keywords

  • re-used PRID
  • acyclic dairy cows
  • estrus detection
  • pregnancy per AI
Open Access

Identification and characterization of non-phosphorylcholine-binding and phosphorylcholine-binding proteins of canine seminal plasma

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 771 - 786

Abstract

Abstract

Seminal plasma (SP) proteins participate in the process of fertilization by binding to the sperm membrane, particularly to the phosphorylcholine-containing lipids. This study aimed to identify and characterize non-phosphorylcholine-binding and phosphorylcholine-binding proteins (nPch- BPs and PchBPs, respectively) of canine SP. The nPchBPs and PchBPs were isolated from canine SP by affinity chromatography. Electrophoretic studies revealed that the nPchBPs and PchBPs occurred in their native state as high-molecular-weight aggregates. Immunofluorescent staining showed preferential binding of nPchBPs to the sperm acrosome membrane, whereas PchBPs coating was uniformly distributed on the sperm post-acrosomal membrane, mid-piece and tail regions. Analysis with mass spectrometry confirmed that canine prostate specific esterase (CPSE) is a component of the nPchBPs and PchBPs, which is implicated in key mechanisms of protein-coating on the sperm plasma membrane surface. In addition, proteins of known binding properties such as prostaglandin-H2 D-isomerase and lipocalin-like 1 protein, identified in canine SP, might have a specific role in the fertilization-associated processes.

Keywords

  • seminal plasma
  • non-phosphorylcholine-binding proteins
  • phosphorylcholine-binding proteins
  • canine
Open Access

Apoptosis in chicken ovarian follicles following in vitro exposure to TCDD, PCB 126 and PCB 153

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 787 - 798

Abstract

Abstract

The study was conducted in order to compare the in vitro effect of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-pdioxin (TCDD), 3,3′,4,4′,5-pentachlorobiphenyl (PCB 126) and 2,2′,4,4′,5,5′-hexachlorobiphenyl (PCB 153) on the number of apoptotic cells and the activity of caspase-3 in chicken ovarian follicles. The ovarian stroma, white (WF) and yellowish (YF) prehierarchical follicles and fragments of the theca and granulosa layers of the 3 largest preovulatory follicles (F3-F1) were in vitro exposed to TCDD (10 nM), PCB 126 (10 nM) and PCB 153 (10 μM) for 24 h. After incubation the number of apoptotic cells and caspase-3 activity were determined by TUNEL method and fluorometric assay, respectively. PCB 126 and PCB 153 increased the number of apoptotic cells in the ovarian stroma while TCDD and PCB 126 elevated it in the WF follicles. Under the control conditions, caspase-3 activity steadily increased along with maturation of the follicles, reaching the highest level in the theca layer of the F1 follicle. The activity of this enzyme in the granulosa layer of F3-F1 follicles was on average 60% lower in comparison to the stroma. Exposure to TCDD elevated caspase-3 activity in prehierarchical follicles and in the granulosa layer of F2 and F1 preovulatory follicles. On the contrary, PCB 126 exerted a suppressive effect on caspase-3 activity in the WF follicles and the granulosa layer of the F2 follicle, and PCB 153 in the theca layer of F2 and F1 and the granulosa layer of the F3 follicle. In conclusion, the results indicate that TCDD and PCBs affect apoptosis in chicken ovarian follicles and in consequence may disrupt follicle development.

Keywords

  • apoptosis
  • caspase-3 activity
  • TCDD
  • PCBs
  • chicken ovarian follicles
Open Access

Broiler health status has a major negative impact on broiler flock contamination with Campylobacter spp. in Lithuania

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 799 - 817

Abstract

Abstract

The objective of this study was to determine risk factors for Campylobacter infection in broiler flocks in Lithuania. Each broiler flock was tested for the contamination with Campylobacter spp., and various broiler farm, flock and abattoir as well as the weather-associated characteristics were analysed using the statistical package SPSS. Study revealed that 59.3% of the examined broiler flocks were contaminated with Campylobacter spp. Statistical analysis revealed that broiler flock contamination with Campylobacter was abattoir- and farm-dependent. Among a number of risk factors (e.g. the number of broiler houses at the farm, the type of ventilation system, the presence of the anteroom and boot security, etc.) identified, two broiler health-associated characteristics: (i) broiler age and (ii) the average weight per bird at abattoir had the highest impact on the increased prevalence of Campylobacter spp. in broilers. According to our results broiler health status has a major negative effect on broiler flock contamination with Campylobacter. Thus, it needs to be considered when improving control of Campylobacter spp. in broilers.

Keywords

  • broiler
  • campylobacteriosis
  • Campylobacter spp.
  • C. jejuni
Open Access

Comparative response of IgA and IgG activity and hematological parameters among four main beef-cattle breeds infected with gastrointestinal nematodes in the warm humid tropic of Mexico

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 819 - 833

Abstract

Abstract

This study determined the immunoglobulin (A and G) activity against gastrointestinal nematodes (GIN) and also the hematological parameters in four beef-calf breeds naturally infected in a tropical region of Mexico. Thirty-six infected calves were used to determine the fecal nematode egg counts (FEC), the IgA and IgG activity in serum and saliva, the packed cell volume (PCV), the plasmatic protein (PP) and the differential leukocyte counts. These parameters were measured for a five-month period. ELISA assay was performed using adult worm crude antigen (AWCA) from Haemonchus contortus, Trichostrongylus colubriformis, Mecistocirrus digitatus and Cooperia punctata. The variables were analyzed using a fixed model according to the breed group. The FEC records (means ± standard deviation) for the different breeds were: Brangus (122±115), Charolais (391±507), Guzerat (294±326) and Brown Swiss (413±395). No statistical differences (P>0.05) were found among breeds. Cooperia and Haemonchus were the main identified genera in the coprocultures. Differences in hematological parameters were observed among breeds (P<0.01); Guzerat showed the highest PCV (42.6±4.7%). The lowest leukocyte counts were observed in the Charolais breed (9.2±2.4 × 109 cells L-1). Differences between Guzerat and Charolais were only detected in eosinophils, neutrophils and lymphocytes. Increased activity of IgA was observed against M. digitatus (21% OD) compared with the response against C. punctata in serum samples (13% OD). The lowest IgA activity in serum and saliva was found in Guzerat calves. Charolais and Brown Swiss showed the highest IgA activity in serum and the highest value in saliva was found in Brangus.

Keywords

  • Cooperia punctata
  • Mecistocirrus digitatus
  • eosinophils
  • immunoglobulins
  • peripheral immunity
  • saliva

Animal nutrition, and feedstuffs

Open Access

Supplementing lactation diets with herbal extract mixture during summer improves the performance of sows and nursing piglets

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 835 - 847

Abstract

Abstract

A total of 45 Landrace × Yorkshire multiparous sows were used to evaluate the effect of dietary herbal extract mixture (Scutellaria baicalensis and Lonicera japonica, HEM) supplementation in lactating sows under heat stress. Sows were randomly allotted to 1 of 3 dietary treatments: 1) CON, basal diet; 2) TRT 1, basal diet with 5 g/d HEM; 3) TRT 2, basal diet with 10 g/d HEM. During lactation, dietary HEM supplementation linearly increased (P<0.05) the average daily feed intake (ADFI) and linearly decreased (P<0.05) backfat loss. The digestibility of dry matter (DM) was increased after farrowing (linear, P<0.05; quadratic, P<0.05) and weaning (linear, P<0.05) by HEM supplementation. Furthermore, HEM treatment led to a lower (linear, P<0.01) serum cortisol level. In addition, administration of HEM improved (linear, P<0.05) the piglets weaning weight and overall average daily gain (ADG) during suckling period. Meanwhile, on day 7 and 14 after birth, the fecal score of piglets was decreased (linear, P<0.01) by HEM supplementation. Taken together, under high ambient temperatures, inclusion of HEM to lactation diets could improve the feed intake, digestibility of DM, piglets weaning weight and ADG, while decreasing backfat loss, serum cortisol level, as well as the diarrhea of piglets.

Keywords

  • lactating sows
  • heat stress
  • herbal extract mixture
  • performance
  • piglets
Open Access

Impacts of distiller’s dried grains with solubles as replacement of soybean meal plus vitamin E supplementation on production, egg quality and blood chemistry of laying hens

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 849 - 862

Abstract

Abstract

The present investigation aimed to study the effect of the partial replacement of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) instead of soybean meal (SBM) with or without vitamin E supplementation in laying hen diet on egg quality criteria, egg analysis, blood chemistry and productive performance traits. A 4×2 factorial design experiment was carried out involving four substitution levels of DDGS (0, 25, 50 and 75%) and two levels of vitamin E (0 and 250 mg /kg diet) through 22-42 weeks of age. No significant differences were noticed between the control and 25 or 50% DDGS substitution in the percentage of eggs produced and egg output. The fewest number of produced eggs and the lightest egg output were observed in 75% DDGS group. Yolk index, shell percentage, and Haugh unit scores were affected (P>0.01) by DDGS levels. Albumin percentage showed increase (P>0.01) in vitamin E treated groups. The impact of the combination of DDGS and vitamin E was significant (P>0.01) on all egg quality traits excepting shell percentage. The 75% DDGS diet gave the highest values of egg nutrients. Vitamin E had a positive effect on egg crude protein, ether extract, and nitrogen free extract which increased by 10.39, 10.28 and 7.85%, respectively. The combination of vitamin E addition and DDGS levels was highly significant (P>0.01) on all egg nutrients. Hens fed the 50% DDGS diet had more concentrations of lipids profile in their blood than those fed control and other DDGS diets. All serum lipid profile inclined to increase due to vitamin E supplementation. The interaction between DDGS and vitamin E had significant (P>0.05 or 0.01) influence on all serum metabolites excepting calcium. It could be concluded that vitamin E could enhance nutrient content of eggs and preserve blood lipids from lipid peroxidation. The interaction between 75% DDGS replaced SBM with 200 mg vitamin E/kg diet accomplished the best results regarding nutrient content of eggs.

Keywords

  • DDGS
  • vitamin E
  • layers
  • production
  • egg quality
  • egg analysis
  • blood metabolites

Behavior, well-being, production technology, and environment

Open Access

Effect of temperament on performance of primiparous dairy cows

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 863 - 872

Abstract

Abstract

This study was designed to analyse the effect of milking behaviour (temperament) of primiparous dairy cows on their milk and reproductive performance as well as survival to the second lactation. Milk performance, reproductive performance and culling data on 12028 Polish Holstein-Friesian primiparous dairy cows were acquired from the SYMLEK database. Using the methodology of the Polish Federation of Cattle Breeders and Dairy Farmers, the temperament of the cows was assessed as: 1 - calm, 2 - normal, 3 - excitable or aggressive. Primiparous cows from the analysed population were characterized by averagely normal temperament and optimal milking speed. Daily and lactation yield depended (P≤0.01) on the temperament of cows. Excitable (aggressive) cows had higher daily and lactation yield compared to normal and calm cows. The temperament trait was found to correlate (P≤0.01) also with functional traits such as milking speed, survival to the second lactation, and culling level. As milking speed increased, the proportion of cows with calm temperament decreased and that of excitable (aggressive) primiparous cows increased. As the temperament score increased, so did the proportion of primiparous cows sold for further breeding. Excitable (aggressive) primiparous cows had the lowest chance of survival to the second calving.

Keywords

  • primiparous
  • temperament
  • milk and reproductive performance
  • milking speed
  • survival
Open Access

Factors affecting the freezing point of milk from Polish Holstein-Friesian cows

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 873 - 885

Abstract

Abstract

The objective of this study was to estimate the influence of lactation number, month of milk sampling, lactation stage and herd size on the freezing point of milk of Polish Holstein‑Friesian cows. Data comprised 4,719,787 milk samples from the first seven lactations of 752,770 Polish Holstein- Friesian cows. Milk freezing point (MFP), milk yield, and fat and protein content were analyzed. The mean MFP of milk samples (-0.5326°C) as well as more than 92% of all milk samples did not exceed the quality limit for the freezing point of cows′ raw milk, which, following Polish standards, was taken to be -0.52°C. The freezing point of milk samples, milk yield, fat and protein content were highly significantly affected by all examined factors: month of sampling, successive lactations, stage of lactation, and herd size. MFP was lowest in milk samples taken from January to March, and highest in samples from November to December. MFP increased with lactation number. Mean MFP decreased with time within lactation, except the first stage (5-35 days in milk). Generally, MFP was highest in small herds (up to 9 cows) and lowest in large herds (more than 150 cows).

Keywords

  • milk freezing point
  • Polish Holstein-Friesian cows
Open Access

The effect of corn or beet pulp silage supplemented diet on production parameters, oxidative stability of muscles and fatty acid composition of abdominal fat in geese

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 887 - 902

Abstract

Abstract

The aim of this study was to assess the production parameters of White Koluda® geese fed with a corn or beet pulp silage supplemented diet. The oxidative stability of breast and thigh muscles during frozen storage and the fatty acid composition of abdominal fat were also investigated. Measurements were carried out on a total of 42 geese of the White Koluda® W31 strain that were divided into three experimental groups: group I (control) - basal diet, group II - basal diet with corn silage addition, group III - basal diet with pressed beet pulp silage addition. Diets containing ad libitum maize silage or sugar beet pulp silage supplemented with a limited amount of commercial diets, significantly reduced BW (about 9%) and ADG (about 27%) of birds compared to the control group in the 14th week of rearing. Feeding corn or sugar beet pulp silage to geese did not affect pH values, heme iron content, colour parameters but decreased lipid oxidation values in muscles 3 days after slaughter. The abdominal fat of geese fed with the pressed beet pulp silage supplemented diet was characterized by a significantly higher content of myristic and linoleic acid and a lower content of oleic acid. In conclusion, feeding geese with limited amount of commercial mixtures supplemented with maize or sugar beet pulp silages may be recommended primarily for increasing financial efficiency in White Koluda® geese farms but also for improving the quality of goose carcasses, due to their low fat and high quality of meat.

Keywords

  • geese
  • breast muscle
  • thigh muscle
  • abdominal fat
  • lipid oxidation
Open Access

Comparison of the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of Rhode Island Red (R-11) capons and cockerels

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 903 - 917

Abstract

Abstract

The aim of the study was the comparison of the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of capons and cockerels. The experiment involved 80 Rhode Island Red (R-11) cockerels, which were randomly assigned to two groups with 40 birds per group. Group I (control) consisted of uncastrated cockerels, and group II was comprised of birds subjected to castration at 9 weeks of age. The castration was performed under local anaesthesia by a veterinary surgeon. The birds received the same diets ad libitum and were kept on litter under optimal environmental conditions, at a stocking density of 7 birds/m2. At the end of fattening, 8 birds whose body weights were similar to the group average were selected for slaughter from each group. After slaughter, the birds were checked for castration success (removal of the testes), analysed for dressing percentage and technological parameters of the meat and subjected to chemical and sensory evaluation of the breast and leg muscles. In summary, the castration of Rhode Island Red cockerels (R-11) had a favourable effect on body weight, feed conversion ratio, dressing percentage and carcass muscling. The breast and leg muscles of the capons were characterised by better water holding capacity, tenderness and sensory score compared to the uncastrated cockerels. In addition, the castration had a positive effect on the content of crude protein in both the breast and leg muscles which, with a higher crude fat content, were characterised by a more favourable profile of fatty acids, i.e. lower SFA and higher n-6 and n-3 PUFA content.

Keywords

  • capon
  • meat quality
  • fatty acid
  • sensorial evaluation
  • SPME-GC-MS
  • chemometrics
21 Articles

Review

Open Access

Dietary supplementation of probiotics in poultry exposed to heat stress – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 591 - 604

Abstract

Abstract

Heat-related stress has become a serious problem in poultry industry along with the global temperatures rise. Heat stress causes detrimental effects on physiology, immunology and microbiology resulting in abnormalities and impaired performances of birds. Several nutritional strategies have been conducted to counteract the detrimental effects of heat stress in poultry, including dietary supplementation of probiotics. This strategy has been proposed to ameliorate the intestinal ecosystem, physiological conditions and immune system, leading to the improved performance and health of birds subjected to heat stress. This review presents the potential benefits of probiotics against heat stress in poultry from the viewpoint of intestinal microbial ecology, morphology and structure, physiological conditions, immune system and production performances. The possible mechanisms through which probiotics may give beneficial impacts on heat-stressed birds are also discussed along with the data reporting the possible drawbacks of using probiotics in heat-stressed poultry.

Keywords

  • poultry
  • heat stress
  • probiotics
  • performance
  • health
Open Access

The natural feed additives as immunostimulants in monogastric animal nutrition – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 605 - 625

Abstract

Abstract

Probiotics, prebiotics, and phytobiotics could be a possible solution as immunostimulants in monogastric animal nutrition. Beneficial effects of application thereof in animals are determined by many factors, e.g. the type of the probiotic strain, probiotic compounds, or plant species used as a supplement. A significant role is also played by the animal species, dosage, and the time and method of administration. The activity of these compounds is primarily focused on prevention of pathogen infections and, consequently, improvement of animal welfare. Probiotics compete with pathogenic bacteria by covering the intestinal epithelium mucosa, thereby interrupting pathogen colonization in the gastrointestinal tract. Supplementation with probiotics, prebiotics, and phytobiotics can also induce positive changes in the intestinal morphology, e.g. elongation of villi or deepening of intestinal crypts. In a majority of cases, they also modulate the immune response of the host. They mobilise the cellular components of the innate immune system (macrophages and heterophils), which defend the animal organism against gastrointestinal infection. Another possibility is the synthesis and release of pro-inflammatory cytokines that modulate adaptive immunity or stabilization of the intestinal microbiome. The main target of immunomodulatory feed additives is reduction of local inflammation, enhancement of the function of the immune system, a substantial impact on the health status of livestock animals, and improvement of their health status and production performance.

Keywords

  • broilers
  • pigs
  • probiotics
  • prebiotics
  • phytobiotics
Open Access

Fiber substrates in the nutrition of weaned piglets – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 627 - 644

Abstract

Abstract

The present review summarizes the results of 37 experiments in which different types and levels (from 0.5 to 29.7%) of fibrous supplements were used in the formulation of diets for weaned piglets. Diets were supplemented with different sources of insoluble dietary fiber (iDF), soluble dietary fiber (sDF), or mixed DF sources. Most of the applied DF sources decreased the ileal and fecal organic matter digestibility, and they often lowered crude protein digestibility. A moderate addition (1.5-8%) of iDF sources increased average daily feed intake (ADFI) and, frequently, average daily gains (ADG). Sources of sDF as well as high inclusion levels of fiber-rich feeds tended to decrease ADFI and ADG. Improved fecal consistency, decreased diarrhea incidence and antibiotic interventions were confirmed in piglets fed diets with added lignocellulose, cooked or raw oat hulls and wheat bran. The dietary inclusion of iDF rather than sDF sources improved gastrointestinal tract (GIT) development, enzyme activity and gut morphology. An increase in the counts of beneficial gut microbiota and the concentrations of short-chain fatty acids was stimulated by diets with addition iDF or sDF sources. Such diets also slowed down proteolytic fermentation which negatively affects the colonic mucosa. Some research findings indicate that iDF sources improve intestinal barrier function. The analyzed experimental data suggest that the addition of 1.5-2% of a lignocellulose preparation, 2% of oat hulls, 4-8% of coarse wheat bran to diets for weaned piglets may be recommended to promote GIT development and health, and to improve growth performance.

Keywords

  • fibrous feeds
  • digestibility
  • performance
  • diarrhea
  • gut health
  • weaned piglets
Open Access

Infectious and non-infectious factors associated with leg disorders in poultry – a review

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 645 - 669

Abstract

Abstract

Broiler chicken welfare, health and performance are strictly linked with skeleton development. Lameness compromises welfare of broiler chickens and causes considerable economic loss since lame birds have difficulty accessing feed and water, become dehydrated and eventually die. Leg disorders are therefore considered to be one of the main factors associated with in-field mortalities between 21-42 d in broiler rearing at European poultry farms. In chickens and other farm animals, bone development is strictly correlated with dietary content of inositol hexaphosphate (IP6), as well as calcium and phosphorus availability. However, lameness is also associated with many other factors, such as diseases, genetics, species, gender, growth, aging, as well as physical loading, rearing period and management. Therefore, the aim of the current paper is to review selected noninfectious and infectious factors, which contribute to bone quality in poultry.

Keywords

  • poultry
  • leg disorders factors
  • bones
  • nutrition
  • management

Animal genetics and breeding

Open Access

Differential expression of miR-145, miR-429 and its target genes in partial reproductive tissues of swine with high and low litter size

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 671 - 681

Abstract

Abstract

To justify the function of miRNAs in reproductive regulation in swine, the expression of miR-145, miR-429 and their related genes were studied in reproductive tissues of sows. Wannan black pig and Yorkshire pigs with extremely high (n=6) and low (n=6) litter size were sampled, and real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) was performed on tissue samples from ovaries, uterus, oviduct, hypothalamus, and pituitary. The results indicated that miR-145, miR-429, and zinc finger E-box binding homeobox 1 gene (ZEB1) were expressed significantly different in Wannan black pig and Yorkshire pigs. In pigs with different fecundity, miR-145 in the uterus was expressed significantly lower in pigs with high litter size, than in pigs with low litter size. The miR-429 expression in the oviduct and pituitary of pigs with high litter size was significantly higher compared with tissues sampled from pigs with low litter size. The ZEB1 expression in the pituitary was lower in pigs with high litter size in comparison to pigs with low litter size, while luteinizing hormone beta subunit (LHβ) showed the opposite pattern of expression. In conclusion, miR-145 and miR-429 were differently expressed in pigs with high and low litter size and might have a role in affecting litter size of sows.

Keywords

  • litter size
  • miR-429
  • miR-145
  • swine
  • ZEB1
Open Access

Genomic prediction by considering genotype × environment interaction using different genomic architectures

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 683 - 701

Abstract

Abstract

In this study, accuracies of genomic prediction across various scenarios were compared using single- trait and multiple-trait animal models to detect genotype × environment (G × E) interaction based on REML method. The simulated high and low linkage disequilibrium (HLD and LLD) genome consisted of 15,000 and 50,000 SNP chip applications with 300 and 600 QTLs controlling the trait of interest. The simulation was done to create the genetic correlations between the traits in 4 environments and heritabilities of the traits were 0.20, 0.25, 0.30 and 0.35 in environments 1, 2, 3 and 4, respectively. Two strategies were used to predict the accuracy of genomic selection for cows without phenotypes. In the first strategy, phenotypes for cows in three environments were kept as a training set and breeding values for all animals were estimated using three-trait model. In the second one, only 25, 50 or 75% of records in the fourth environment and all the records in the other three environments were used to predict GBV for non-phenotyped cows in the environment 4. For the first strategy, the highest accuracy of 0.695 was realized in scenario HLD with 600 QTL and 50K SNP chip for the fourth environment and the lowest accuracy of 0.495 was obtained in scenario LLD with 600QTL and 15K SNP chips for the first environment. Generally, the accuracy of prediction increased significantly (P<0.05) with increasing the number of markers, heritability and the genetic correlation between the traits, but no significant difference was observed between scenarios with 300 and 600 QTL. In comparison with models without G × E interaction, accuracies of the GBV for all environments increased when using multi-trait models. The results showed that the level of LD, number of animals in training set and genetic correlation across environments play important roles if G × E interaction exists. In conclusion, G × E interaction contributes to understanding variations of quantitative trait and increasing accuracy of genomic prediction. Therefore, the interaction should be taken into account in conducting selection in various environments or across different genotypes.

Keywords

  • genomic selection
  • genotype by environment interaction
  • linkage disequilibrium
  • simulation
Open Access

Transcript variants of a region on SSC15 rich in QTLs associated with meat quality in pigs

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 703 - 715

Abstract

Abstract

A high meat percentage in the porcine carcass has been achieved as a result of selection, but it has contributed to a deterioration of pork quality. The level of intramuscular fat has significantly declined, the pork has lost its tenderness and drip loss in meat has substantially increased, which has led to a deterioration of meat flavour and its technological suitability. The recovery of good pork quality could be supported by the development of genetic markers enabling faster breeding progress. This study presents a method by using RNA-seq data that identifies new variants for a chromosome region rich in QTLs for pork quality and selects gene candidates for these traits. This work included two pig breeds: the Polish Landrace (PL) and Puławska (PUL), which differ in meat quality and fat content. The transcriptome profile was estimated for semimembranosus and longissimus dorsi muscles. Into variant calling analysis, transcripts of both muscles encoded by genes located in a region between microsatellites SW964 and SW906 (43-135.9 Mbp) in SSC15 were included. In total, 439 transcripts were searched, 2,800 gene variants were identified and 6 mutations with a high effect belonging to the frameshift variants were found (ENSSSCG00000015976, ENSSSCG00000027516, WRN and XIRP2). Moreover, several interesting significant missense variants in PDLIM3, PLCD4 and SARAF genes were detected. These genes are recommended as candidates for meat quality; however they require further investigation in an association study.

Keywords

  • pig
  • meat quality trait
  • RNA-seq
  • variant calling
  • SNP
Open Access

Condition of sows during reproductive activity depending on lipid metabolism gene (DGAT1) polymorphism

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 717 - 731

Abstract

Abstract

Mutations at gene loci associated with body lipid metabolism may affect not only carcass and meat quality traits in young animals but also the production results of mother sows. The objective of the study was to determine the effect of mutations in the DGAT1 gene, found in Polish populations of maternal breeds, on condition of gilts and later on condition and reproductive performance of sows during three reproductive cycles. The study involved 118 gilts of maternal breeds (Polish Large White (PLW ) and Polish Landrace (PL)). Gilts and subsequently sows were monitored for body weight (BW) and P2 backfat thickness over three reproductive cycles and their litters were analysed for the number and body weight of the piglets. A total of 354 litters of pigs were evaluated. In the analysed pig populations, a single mutation (A/G) in the DGAT1 gene (rs45434075) had a significant effect on deposition of subcutaneous fat only in the PLW gilts (P2G, AA,AG<GG P≤0.05 and P2F r=214 P≤0.01). As regards the G/A 3’UTR polymorphism of the DGAT1 gene (rs342152658), this mutation is negatively correlated only in the PL sows with fatness during their reproductive life and with BW of the piglets reared to 21 d of age. Sows of the DGAT1GG 3’UTR genotype had significantly lower P2F backfat thickness (P≤0.05) and, during a 21-d lactation, reared lighter piglets (P≤0.01) compared to sows of the same breed with the DGAT1AG 3’UTR genotype. The analysed traits were also affected by the interaction between mutations in the DGAT1 gene of the sows of maternal breeds (DGAT1/DGAT1 3’UTR). Sows of the DGAT1GG/GG genotype were characterised by the highest backfat thickness on selection day, and during three reproductive cycles they reared significantly more piglets compared to sows of the DGAT1AA/AG genotype. Heterozygous sows (AG/AG) reared significantly heavier piglets than sows of the AA/GG and AG/GG genotypes (P≤0.05).

Keywords

  • condition
  • rearing of piglets
  • three reproductive cycles
  • DGAT1 A/G
  • DGAT1 G/A 3’UTR

The biology, physiology, reproduction, and health

Open Access

Effect of the age of ganders on reproductive behavior and fertility in a competitive mating structure

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 733 - 746

Abstract

Abstract

This paper presents the study on determination of gander-goose mating activity in relation to age and the position of gander in social hierarchic rank. Moreover, levels of fertility (F) and testosterone (T) in different gander age groups were analyzed. The study was carried out on one-year-old geese (N = 64) and one- or two-year-old ganders (N = 16; 1♂: 4♀). Observations of mating activity (MA) were conducted during the 3-h period of the daylight (10 h), 2-3 times per week (102 h/ group/34 days). The recording was done with a digital recorder connected to cameras. Agonistic behavioral interactions between ganders were noted to determine a social hierarchic rank. The MA was described by frequency of courtship displays, copulation attempts, successful copulation (SCop), and interaction disrupted (DMI) with agonistic behavior. Fertility was evaluated after the artificial incubation (1×/week) in a commercial hatchery. The frequency of SCop, DMI, and T concentration were higher (P<0.05) for two- than one-year-old ganders. Moreover, F was higher by 11.2% for group of geese kept with two-year-old ganders. There was an effect of the gander’s rank in social hierarchy on the frequency of MA. For dominant ganders, frequency of courtship displays (1.0/times/3 h) and copulation attempts (0.8/times/3 h) were lower (P<0.05), but SCop (1.5/times/3 h) was higher (P<0.05) than for subordinate ones. Thus, in domestic goose flocks reproductive success was associated with age of ganders used in competitive mating system. This is probably a multifactor effect of interaction between sexual/social experience, T-dependent mating motivation, and efficiency of MA. It is recommended to keep one-year-old geese with older ganders (after sexual reactivation) for optimal fertility results with sex ratio adjusted to gander-gander antagonistic interaction dynamic.

Keywords

  • domestic geese
  • reproduction
  • age
  • sexual behavior
  • hierarchic rank
Open Access

Can roosters′ head ornaments serve as a criterion for their selection as a valuable reproducers?

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 747 - 755

Abstract

Abstract

It is widely practiced that before mating the roosters are selected as reproducers mainly on the basis of head ornaments appearance. Relationship between males secondary sexual traits (comb and wattles) with testes size, as all of them are testosterone-dependent traits, were examined. Measurements of head ornaments and testes from two broiler breeder lines and two laying lines of chicken were correlated. The value of fluctuating asymmetry (FA) of bilateral traits was also measured. Positive correlations were found for head ornaments and testes weight in one of broiler breeder lines. No correlations were found for males of laying lines. The degree of FA did not differ between lines, except for FA of wattle length, which was higher (P≤0.05) for one of the broiler lines. Results obtained indicated that head ornaments cannot be used as the only criterion for rooster selection as reproducers.

Keywords

  • roosters
  • head ornaments
  • secondary sexual traits
  • testes size
Open Access

Effect of PRID-Delta devices associated with shortened estrus synchronization protocols on estrous response and fertility in dairy cows

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 757 - 770

Abstract

Abstract

This study evaluated the effect of a once-used progesterone (P4) intravaginal device (PRID) associated with four different shortened P4-based estrus synchronization (ES) protocols on estrous response (ER) and pregnancy per AI (P/AI) in cyclic and acyclic lactating dairy cows. Cows (n=465) were randomly assigned to one of the following protocols: 1) 2PGG, cows were given a PRID-Delta and 100 μg GnRH i.m. at PRID insertion (day 0). The PRID was left for 5 d, and 25 mg of dinoprost (PGF) i.m. given twice at PRID removal and 24 h later; 2) 2PGGe, same treatments as 2PGG plus 500 IU of eCG i.m. at PRID removal; 3) 2PGe, same treatments as 2PGGe, except GnRH was not given at PRID insertion; 4) PGe, same treatments as 2PGe, except PGF was only given at PRID removal. A total of 258 cows received a new PRID-Delta containing 1.55 g of P4, whereas 207 cows received a once-used PRID. Estrus was determined from P4 device removal until 96 h after using an automated heat detection system. Cows in estrus were given a second GnRH at AI and those without signs of estrus by 96 h after PRID removal were given GnRH and timed-AI (TA I). All inseminations were performed by one technician with commercially available frozen-thawed semen. Ultrasonography was performed at initiation of protocol and 28-34 days post AI to determine cyclicity and pregnancy status, respectively. Cows receiving once-used P4 devices had greater ER than cows receiving a new device (59.9 vs. 50.0; P=0.029), but P/AI did not differ between P4 devices, respectively (P>0.1; 40.6 vs 40.7%). Cyclic cows were less likely to display estrus than acyclic cows by a factor of 0.66 (P=0.036). Cows subjected to the 2PGe (2.41; P<0.01) protocol were more likely to display estrus than cows subjected to the 2PGG, whereas cows subjected to the PGe protocol did not differ (0.94; P=0.8) from those in the 2PGG group. Despite differences in ER, neither cyclicity nor estrus synchronization protocol affected P/AI (overall 40.6%). In summary, cyclic cows, those given a new P4 device and those subjected to either 2PGG or PGe protocol had reduced ER. However, all the factors examined had no significant effect on P/AI. All the estrus synchronization protocols resulted in acceptable fertility.

Keywords

  • re-used PRID
  • acyclic dairy cows
  • estrus detection
  • pregnancy per AI
Open Access

Identification and characterization of non-phosphorylcholine-binding and phosphorylcholine-binding proteins of canine seminal plasma

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 771 - 786

Abstract

Abstract

Seminal plasma (SP) proteins participate in the process of fertilization by binding to the sperm membrane, particularly to the phosphorylcholine-containing lipids. This study aimed to identify and characterize non-phosphorylcholine-binding and phosphorylcholine-binding proteins (nPch- BPs and PchBPs, respectively) of canine SP. The nPchBPs and PchBPs were isolated from canine SP by affinity chromatography. Electrophoretic studies revealed that the nPchBPs and PchBPs occurred in their native state as high-molecular-weight aggregates. Immunofluorescent staining showed preferential binding of nPchBPs to the sperm acrosome membrane, whereas PchBPs coating was uniformly distributed on the sperm post-acrosomal membrane, mid-piece and tail regions. Analysis with mass spectrometry confirmed that canine prostate specific esterase (CPSE) is a component of the nPchBPs and PchBPs, which is implicated in key mechanisms of protein-coating on the sperm plasma membrane surface. In addition, proteins of known binding properties such as prostaglandin-H2 D-isomerase and lipocalin-like 1 protein, identified in canine SP, might have a specific role in the fertilization-associated processes.

Keywords

  • seminal plasma
  • non-phosphorylcholine-binding proteins
  • phosphorylcholine-binding proteins
  • canine
Open Access

Apoptosis in chicken ovarian follicles following in vitro exposure to TCDD, PCB 126 and PCB 153

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 787 - 798

Abstract

Abstract

The study was conducted in order to compare the in vitro effect of 2,3,7,8-tetrachlorodibenzo-pdioxin (TCDD), 3,3′,4,4′,5-pentachlorobiphenyl (PCB 126) and 2,2′,4,4′,5,5′-hexachlorobiphenyl (PCB 153) on the number of apoptotic cells and the activity of caspase-3 in chicken ovarian follicles. The ovarian stroma, white (WF) and yellowish (YF) prehierarchical follicles and fragments of the theca and granulosa layers of the 3 largest preovulatory follicles (F3-F1) were in vitro exposed to TCDD (10 nM), PCB 126 (10 nM) and PCB 153 (10 μM) for 24 h. After incubation the number of apoptotic cells and caspase-3 activity were determined by TUNEL method and fluorometric assay, respectively. PCB 126 and PCB 153 increased the number of apoptotic cells in the ovarian stroma while TCDD and PCB 126 elevated it in the WF follicles. Under the control conditions, caspase-3 activity steadily increased along with maturation of the follicles, reaching the highest level in the theca layer of the F1 follicle. The activity of this enzyme in the granulosa layer of F3-F1 follicles was on average 60% lower in comparison to the stroma. Exposure to TCDD elevated caspase-3 activity in prehierarchical follicles and in the granulosa layer of F2 and F1 preovulatory follicles. On the contrary, PCB 126 exerted a suppressive effect on caspase-3 activity in the WF follicles and the granulosa layer of the F2 follicle, and PCB 153 in the theca layer of F2 and F1 and the granulosa layer of the F3 follicle. In conclusion, the results indicate that TCDD and PCBs affect apoptosis in chicken ovarian follicles and in consequence may disrupt follicle development.

Keywords

  • apoptosis
  • caspase-3 activity
  • TCDD
  • PCBs
  • chicken ovarian follicles
Open Access

Broiler health status has a major negative impact on broiler flock contamination with Campylobacter spp. in Lithuania

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 799 - 817

Abstract

Abstract

The objective of this study was to determine risk factors for Campylobacter infection in broiler flocks in Lithuania. Each broiler flock was tested for the contamination with Campylobacter spp., and various broiler farm, flock and abattoir as well as the weather-associated characteristics were analysed using the statistical package SPSS. Study revealed that 59.3% of the examined broiler flocks were contaminated with Campylobacter spp. Statistical analysis revealed that broiler flock contamination with Campylobacter was abattoir- and farm-dependent. Among a number of risk factors (e.g. the number of broiler houses at the farm, the type of ventilation system, the presence of the anteroom and boot security, etc.) identified, two broiler health-associated characteristics: (i) broiler age and (ii) the average weight per bird at abattoir had the highest impact on the increased prevalence of Campylobacter spp. in broilers. According to our results broiler health status has a major negative effect on broiler flock contamination with Campylobacter. Thus, it needs to be considered when improving control of Campylobacter spp. in broilers.

Keywords

  • broiler
  • campylobacteriosis
  • Campylobacter spp.
  • C. jejuni
Open Access

Comparative response of IgA and IgG activity and hematological parameters among four main beef-cattle breeds infected with gastrointestinal nematodes in the warm humid tropic of Mexico

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 819 - 833

Abstract

Abstract

This study determined the immunoglobulin (A and G) activity against gastrointestinal nematodes (GIN) and also the hematological parameters in four beef-calf breeds naturally infected in a tropical region of Mexico. Thirty-six infected calves were used to determine the fecal nematode egg counts (FEC), the IgA and IgG activity in serum and saliva, the packed cell volume (PCV), the plasmatic protein (PP) and the differential leukocyte counts. These parameters were measured for a five-month period. ELISA assay was performed using adult worm crude antigen (AWCA) from Haemonchus contortus, Trichostrongylus colubriformis, Mecistocirrus digitatus and Cooperia punctata. The variables were analyzed using a fixed model according to the breed group. The FEC records (means ± standard deviation) for the different breeds were: Brangus (122±115), Charolais (391±507), Guzerat (294±326) and Brown Swiss (413±395). No statistical differences (P>0.05) were found among breeds. Cooperia and Haemonchus were the main identified genera in the coprocultures. Differences in hematological parameters were observed among breeds (P<0.01); Guzerat showed the highest PCV (42.6±4.7%). The lowest leukocyte counts were observed in the Charolais breed (9.2±2.4 × 109 cells L-1). Differences between Guzerat and Charolais were only detected in eosinophils, neutrophils and lymphocytes. Increased activity of IgA was observed against M. digitatus (21% OD) compared with the response against C. punctata in serum samples (13% OD). The lowest IgA activity in serum and saliva was found in Guzerat calves. Charolais and Brown Swiss showed the highest IgA activity in serum and the highest value in saliva was found in Brangus.

Keywords

  • Cooperia punctata
  • Mecistocirrus digitatus
  • eosinophils
  • immunoglobulins
  • peripheral immunity
  • saliva

Animal nutrition, and feedstuffs

Open Access

Supplementing lactation diets with herbal extract mixture during summer improves the performance of sows and nursing piglets

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 835 - 847

Abstract

Abstract

A total of 45 Landrace × Yorkshire multiparous sows were used to evaluate the effect of dietary herbal extract mixture (Scutellaria baicalensis and Lonicera japonica, HEM) supplementation in lactating sows under heat stress. Sows were randomly allotted to 1 of 3 dietary treatments: 1) CON, basal diet; 2) TRT 1, basal diet with 5 g/d HEM; 3) TRT 2, basal diet with 10 g/d HEM. During lactation, dietary HEM supplementation linearly increased (P<0.05) the average daily feed intake (ADFI) and linearly decreased (P<0.05) backfat loss. The digestibility of dry matter (DM) was increased after farrowing (linear, P<0.05; quadratic, P<0.05) and weaning (linear, P<0.05) by HEM supplementation. Furthermore, HEM treatment led to a lower (linear, P<0.01) serum cortisol level. In addition, administration of HEM improved (linear, P<0.05) the piglets weaning weight and overall average daily gain (ADG) during suckling period. Meanwhile, on day 7 and 14 after birth, the fecal score of piglets was decreased (linear, P<0.01) by HEM supplementation. Taken together, under high ambient temperatures, inclusion of HEM to lactation diets could improve the feed intake, digestibility of DM, piglets weaning weight and ADG, while decreasing backfat loss, serum cortisol level, as well as the diarrhea of piglets.

Keywords

  • lactating sows
  • heat stress
  • herbal extract mixture
  • performance
  • piglets
Open Access

Impacts of distiller’s dried grains with solubles as replacement of soybean meal plus vitamin E supplementation on production, egg quality and blood chemistry of laying hens

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 849 - 862

Abstract

Abstract

The present investigation aimed to study the effect of the partial replacement of distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS) instead of soybean meal (SBM) with or without vitamin E supplementation in laying hen diet on egg quality criteria, egg analysis, blood chemistry and productive performance traits. A 4×2 factorial design experiment was carried out involving four substitution levels of DDGS (0, 25, 50 and 75%) and two levels of vitamin E (0 and 250 mg /kg diet) through 22-42 weeks of age. No significant differences were noticed between the control and 25 or 50% DDGS substitution in the percentage of eggs produced and egg output. The fewest number of produced eggs and the lightest egg output were observed in 75% DDGS group. Yolk index, shell percentage, and Haugh unit scores were affected (P>0.01) by DDGS levels. Albumin percentage showed increase (P>0.01) in vitamin E treated groups. The impact of the combination of DDGS and vitamin E was significant (P>0.01) on all egg quality traits excepting shell percentage. The 75% DDGS diet gave the highest values of egg nutrients. Vitamin E had a positive effect on egg crude protein, ether extract, and nitrogen free extract which increased by 10.39, 10.28 and 7.85%, respectively. The combination of vitamin E addition and DDGS levels was highly significant (P>0.01) on all egg nutrients. Hens fed the 50% DDGS diet had more concentrations of lipids profile in their blood than those fed control and other DDGS diets. All serum lipid profile inclined to increase due to vitamin E supplementation. The interaction between DDGS and vitamin E had significant (P>0.05 or 0.01) influence on all serum metabolites excepting calcium. It could be concluded that vitamin E could enhance nutrient content of eggs and preserve blood lipids from lipid peroxidation. The interaction between 75% DDGS replaced SBM with 200 mg vitamin E/kg diet accomplished the best results regarding nutrient content of eggs.

Keywords

  • DDGS
  • vitamin E
  • layers
  • production
  • egg quality
  • egg analysis
  • blood metabolites

Behavior, well-being, production technology, and environment

Open Access

Effect of temperament on performance of primiparous dairy cows

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 863 - 872

Abstract

Abstract

This study was designed to analyse the effect of milking behaviour (temperament) of primiparous dairy cows on their milk and reproductive performance as well as survival to the second lactation. Milk performance, reproductive performance and culling data on 12028 Polish Holstein-Friesian primiparous dairy cows were acquired from the SYMLEK database. Using the methodology of the Polish Federation of Cattle Breeders and Dairy Farmers, the temperament of the cows was assessed as: 1 - calm, 2 - normal, 3 - excitable or aggressive. Primiparous cows from the analysed population were characterized by averagely normal temperament and optimal milking speed. Daily and lactation yield depended (P≤0.01) on the temperament of cows. Excitable (aggressive) cows had higher daily and lactation yield compared to normal and calm cows. The temperament trait was found to correlate (P≤0.01) also with functional traits such as milking speed, survival to the second lactation, and culling level. As milking speed increased, the proportion of cows with calm temperament decreased and that of excitable (aggressive) primiparous cows increased. As the temperament score increased, so did the proportion of primiparous cows sold for further breeding. Excitable (aggressive) primiparous cows had the lowest chance of survival to the second calving.

Keywords

  • primiparous
  • temperament
  • milk and reproductive performance
  • milking speed
  • survival
Open Access

Factors affecting the freezing point of milk from Polish Holstein-Friesian cows

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 873 - 885

Abstract

Abstract

The objective of this study was to estimate the influence of lactation number, month of milk sampling, lactation stage and herd size on the freezing point of milk of Polish Holstein‑Friesian cows. Data comprised 4,719,787 milk samples from the first seven lactations of 752,770 Polish Holstein- Friesian cows. Milk freezing point (MFP), milk yield, and fat and protein content were analyzed. The mean MFP of milk samples (-0.5326°C) as well as more than 92% of all milk samples did not exceed the quality limit for the freezing point of cows′ raw milk, which, following Polish standards, was taken to be -0.52°C. The freezing point of milk samples, milk yield, fat and protein content were highly significantly affected by all examined factors: month of sampling, successive lactations, stage of lactation, and herd size. MFP was lowest in milk samples taken from January to March, and highest in samples from November to December. MFP increased with lactation number. Mean MFP decreased with time within lactation, except the first stage (5-35 days in milk). Generally, MFP was highest in small herds (up to 9 cows) and lowest in large herds (more than 150 cows).

Keywords

  • milk freezing point
  • Polish Holstein-Friesian cows
Open Access

The effect of corn or beet pulp silage supplemented diet on production parameters, oxidative stability of muscles and fatty acid composition of abdominal fat in geese

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 887 - 902

Abstract

Abstract

The aim of this study was to assess the production parameters of White Koluda® geese fed with a corn or beet pulp silage supplemented diet. The oxidative stability of breast and thigh muscles during frozen storage and the fatty acid composition of abdominal fat were also investigated. Measurements were carried out on a total of 42 geese of the White Koluda® W31 strain that were divided into three experimental groups: group I (control) - basal diet, group II - basal diet with corn silage addition, group III - basal diet with pressed beet pulp silage addition. Diets containing ad libitum maize silage or sugar beet pulp silage supplemented with a limited amount of commercial diets, significantly reduced BW (about 9%) and ADG (about 27%) of birds compared to the control group in the 14th week of rearing. Feeding corn or sugar beet pulp silage to geese did not affect pH values, heme iron content, colour parameters but decreased lipid oxidation values in muscles 3 days after slaughter. The abdominal fat of geese fed with the pressed beet pulp silage supplemented diet was characterized by a significantly higher content of myristic and linoleic acid and a lower content of oleic acid. In conclusion, feeding geese with limited amount of commercial mixtures supplemented with maize or sugar beet pulp silages may be recommended primarily for increasing financial efficiency in White Koluda® geese farms but also for improving the quality of goose carcasses, due to their low fat and high quality of meat.

Keywords

  • geese
  • breast muscle
  • thigh muscle
  • abdominal fat
  • lipid oxidation
Open Access

Comparison of the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of Rhode Island Red (R-11) capons and cockerels

Published Online: 01 Aug 2017
Page range: 903 - 917

Abstract

Abstract

The aim of the study was the comparison of the physicochemical and sensory characteristics of capons and cockerels. The experiment involved 80 Rhode Island Red (R-11) cockerels, which were randomly assigned to two groups with 40 birds per group. Group I (control) consisted of uncastrated cockerels, and group II was comprised of birds subjected to castration at 9 weeks of age. The castration was performed under local anaesthesia by a veterinary surgeon. The birds received the same diets ad libitum and were kept on litter under optimal environmental conditions, at a stocking density of 7 birds/m2. At the end of fattening, 8 birds whose body weights were similar to the group average were selected for slaughter from each group. After slaughter, the birds were checked for castration success (removal of the testes), analysed for dressing percentage and technological parameters of the meat and subjected to chemical and sensory evaluation of the breast and leg muscles. In summary, the castration of Rhode Island Red cockerels (R-11) had a favourable effect on body weight, feed conversion ratio, dressing percentage and carcass muscling. The breast and leg muscles of the capons were characterised by better water holding capacity, tenderness and sensory score compared to the uncastrated cockerels. In addition, the castration had a positive effect on the content of crude protein in both the breast and leg muscles which, with a higher crude fat content, were characterised by a more favourable profile of fatty acids, i.e. lower SFA and higher n-6 and n-3 PUFA content.

Keywords

  • capon
  • meat quality
  • fatty acid
  • sensorial evaluation
  • SPME-GC-MS
  • chemometrics

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