In swine industry, post-weanling diarrhoea (PWD) is traditionally prevented or treated with antibiotics to maintain growth performance. Considering bacterial resistance, many countries have banned the use of antibiotics in animal feed. Studies have demonstrated that, under normal physiological condition, dietary inclusion of organic acids (OAs) and medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) were beneficial to weanling pigs. However, there is still limited information of this blend about enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli challenged weanling pigs. A 3-wk experiment was conducted to determine the effect of the blend of OAs and medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) on the growth performance and diarrhoea incidence in weanling pigs challenged with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli K88. Thirty weaned pigs (28 ± 1 d of age, 6.24 ± 0.36 kg) were used in a randomized complete block design experiment with 3 treatments, 5 replicate pens per treatment and 2 animals per pen. The treatments were: (1) control, basal diet (CON); (2) CON + 0.2% blend of OAs and MCFAs (BOM1); (3) CON + 0.4% blend of OAs and MCFAs (BOM2). From d 8 to 10, pigs were orally challenged with 5 mL enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli K88 (109 CFU/mL).
Pigs fed the blend of OAs and MCFAs diets had greater body weight (BW) than pigs fed CON diet on d 7, 14 and 21 of the experiment. During pre- and post-challenge, the inclusion of the blend of OAs and MCFAs increased average daily gain (ADG), average daily feed intake (ADFI) and gain to feed ratio (G:F) with the exception of G:F during d 8–14. Additionally, pigs fed BOM2 diet had higher final BW and ADG during d 1–21 than those fed BOM1 diet. Before challenge and post-challenge (d 8–14), incidence of diarrhoea was lower in BOM1 and BOM2 treatments than for the CON treatment. However, diarrhoea incidence was not affected due to the dietary treatments between d 15 and 21.
It is concluded that dietary supplementation with the blend of OAs and MCFAs at 0.2% or 0.4% improved growth performance and reduced diarrhoea as indicated by reduced diarrhoea incidence in weanling piglets challenged with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli K88.
Lei, X. J., Park, J. W., Baek, D. H., Kim, J. K., & Kim, I. H. (2017). Feeding the blend of organic acids and medium chain fatty acids reduces the diarrhea in piglets orally challenged with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli K88. Animal Feed Science and Technology, 224, 46-51.