Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) has been reported to have many favorable biological functions such as enhancing growth of pigs and reducing body fat gain. In addition, supplementation of CLA in sow diets has been shown to alter the colostrum and milk fatty acid profile as well as increase the immunoglobulin G (IgG) concentrations of sows and their progeny. Because the IgG absorbed from colostrum is an important part of passive immunity for suckling piglets, the enhancement of IgG by CLA supplementation may be beneficial for the growth and survival of suckling piglets. On the other hand, primiparous sows must simultaneously meet the conflicting demands of pregnancy and growth. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to assess the effect of CLA supplementation in the diets of primiparous pregnant sows during late gestation on performance, colostrum yield, fatty acid composition, and IgG concentrations. For this purpose, a total of 24 primiparous Landrace × Large White pregnant sows were randomly allotted to one of four dietary treatments: 0% (control), 0.75%, 1.50%, and 2.25% CLA supplementation from day 85 of gestation to parturition. Colostrum samples were collected immediately after parturition from the sows and blood samples were obtained from the piglets 24h after farrowing.
As a result, there was a linear decrease in the mortality of suckling piglets from supplemented dams. Regarding colostrum composition, CLA administration during gestation increased linearly total saturated fatty acids and decreased linearly monounsaturated fatty acids and polyunsaturated fatty acids. The concentrations of CLA isomers were higher in colostrum from primiparous sows fed CLA diets than in the control group. Moreover, feeding CLA increased colostral IgG concentrations, as well as that in the serum of neonatal piglets.
In conclusion, an increasing CLA supplementation up to 2.25% during late gestation in the diet of primiparous sows could improve the passive immunity through colostral IgG and the survival of suckling piglets.
Liu, H., Wu, F., Bai, L., Chen, Y., Lai, C. H., Ren, L., & Wang, F. (2018). Effect of dietary conjugated linoleic acid supplementation during late gestation on colostrum yield, fatty acid composition, and IgG concentrations in primiparous sows. Canadian Journal of Animal Science, 98(4): 732-740. https://doi.org/10.1139/cjas-2017-0202