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Effects of a protease on gut health and performance of piglets weaned at 28 days with different diet complexities

Grant number: 22/07694-7
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Master
Effective date (Start): December 01, 2022
Effective date (End): July 31, 2024
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Animal Husbandry - Animal Nutrition and Feeding
Principal Investigator:Cesar Augusto Pospissil Garbossa
Grantee:Bruno Braga Carnino
Host Institution: Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia (FMVZ). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil


Complex rations, with ingredients of high biological value such as whey, lactose, plasma and animal-derived flours, among others, have been used by the industry in the formulation of nursery rations in order to facilitate the piglet's adaptation after weaning. Although they have proved to be efficient for this purpose, the high cost of manufacturing these rations has become prohibitive. The use of additives such as proteases can enable the use of less digestible ingredients, but cheaper, for piglets used in simple formulations. Proteases combat the increase in fermentable protein in the intestine, caused by plant ingredients, which has a potentially deleterious effect on the animal. For this, 192 piglets weaned at 28 days will be exposed to six treatments in a 2x3 factorial experimental design, with or without the addition of a protease in the ration and three different levels of diet complexity; each treatment has eight replications and the respective experimental units (pens) will be composed of four animals. Feeding will be ad libitum, with four phases of ration: pre-starter 1 (1-7 days), pre-starter 2 (8-21 days), starter 1 (22-28 days) and starter 2 (29-42 days). Feed consumption and waste will be counted daily, and at feed changes all piglets will be individually weighed to calculate performance variables. Daily stools will be evaluated and classified to assess the frequency of diarrhea. At 21 and 42 days of experiment, one animal per experimental unit with the average weight closest to the average of the pen (total of 96), will be slaughtered to perform the analysis of intestinal morphology, gene expression, microbiome, metagenomics, pH and VFA. Duodenum and jejunum samples will be collected. Ileum, cecum and colon for analysis.

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