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Animal Breeding and Genetics
Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Sciences 2004;17(11): 1575-1581.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.5713/ajas.2004.1575    Published online January 1, 2004.
Effects of Copper-bearing Montmorillonite on Growth Performance and Digestive Function of Growing Pigs
C. H. Hu, M. S. Xia, Z. R. Xu, L. Xiong
A total of 96 growing barrows (Duroc횞Landrace횞Yorkshire) at an average BW of 20.2 kg were used to investigate the effects of montmorillonite (MMT) or copper-bearing montmorillonite (Cu-MMT) on growth performance, intestinal microflora, digestive enzyme activities of pancreas and small intestinal contents, and the apparent nutrient digestion. The pigs were allocated to three groups with 32 pigs per treatment for 42 days and the average BW at the end of the experiment was 49.7 kg. The three dietary treatments were basal diet only (control group), basal diet +1.5 g/kg MMT, and basal diet +1.5 g/kg Cu-MMT. The results showed that supplementation with Cu-MMT significantly improved growth performance as compared to control and pigs fed with Cu-MMT had higher average daily gain than those fed with MMT. As compared to control, supplementation with Cu-MMT significantly reduced the total viable counts of Escherichia coli and Clostridium in the small intestine and proximal colon. Supplementation with MMT had no significant influence on intestinal microflora, although there was a tendency for Escherichia coli and Clostridium to be lower than the control. Pigs fed with Cu-MMT had lower viable counts of Escherichia coli in colonic contents than those fed with MMT. Although supplementation with MMT improved the activities of the digestive enzymes in the small intestinal contents, the tendency was not significant. Supplementation with Cu-MMT significantly improved the activities of total protease, amylase and lipase in the small intestinal contents. Supplementation with MMT or Cu-MMT improved the apparent nutrient digestion.
Keywords: Copper-bearing Montmorillonite; Growth Performance; Intestinal Microflora; Digestion; Pig

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