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Type of publication: Journal Article
Type of document: Full Paper

Year: 2017

Authors: Pourazad, P; Khiaosa-Ard, R; Metzler-Zebeli, BU; Klevenhusen, F; Zebeli, Q

Title: Restoration of in situ fiber degradation and the role of fibrolytic microbes and ruminal pH in cows fed grain-rich diets transiently or continuously.

Source: Animal. 2017; 11(12):2193-2202

Authors Vetmeduni Vienna:

Khiaosa-Ard Ratchaneewan
Klevenhusen Fenja
Metzler-Zebeli Barbara
Pourazad Poulad
Zebeli Qendrim

Vetmed Research Units
Institute of Animal Nutrition and Functional Plant Compounds
University Clinic for Swine

Project(s): d-i.INFLACOW: Characterization and prevention of diet-induced inflammation and related immune and metabolic disorders in dairy cows

In this study, we used two different grain-rich feeding models (continuous or transient) to determine their effects on in situ fiber degradation and abundances of important rumen fibrolytic microbes in the rumen. The role of the magnitude of ruminal pH drop during grain feeding in the fiber degradation was also determined. The study was performed in eight rumen-fistulated dry cows. They were fed forage-only diet (baseline), and then challenged with a 60% concentrate diet for 4 weeks, either continuously (n=4 cows) or transiently (n=4 cows). The cows of transient feeding had 1 week off concentrate in between. Ruminal degradation of grass silage and fiber-rich hay was determined by the in situ technique, and microbial abundances attached to incubated samples were analyzed by quantitative PCR. The in situ trials were performed at the baseline and in the 1st and the last week of concentrate feeding in the continuous model. The in situ trials were done in cows of the transient model at the baseline and in the 1st week of the re-challenge with concentrate. In situ degradation of NDF and ADF of the forage samples, and microbial abundances were determined at 0, 4, 8, 24 and 48 h of the incubation. Ruminal pH and temperature during the incubation were recorded using indwelling pH sensors. Compared with the respective baseline, both grain-rich feeding models lowered ruminal pH and increased the duration of pH below 5.5 and 5.8. Results of the grass silage incubation showed that in the continuous model the extent of NDF and ADF degradation was lower in the 1st, but not in the last week compared with the baseline. For the transient model, degradation of NDF of the silage was lower during the re-challenge compared with the baseline. Degradation of NDF and ADF of the hay was suppressed by both feeding models compared with the respective baseline. Changes in fiber degradation of either grass silage or hay were not related to the magnitude of ruminal pH depression during grain-rich feeding. In both feeding models total fungal numbers and relative abundance of Butyrivibrio fibrisolvens attached to the incubated forages were decreased by the challenge. Overall, Fibrobacter succinogenes was more sensitive to the grain challenge compared with Ruminococcus albus and Ruminococcus flavefaciens. The study provided evidence for a restored ruminal fiber degradation after prolonged time of grain-rich feeding, however depending on physical and chemical characteristics of forages.

Keywords Pubmed: Animal Nutritional Physiological Phenomena
Cattle Diseasesmetabolism
Dietary Fibermetabolism
Edible Grain
Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
Lactationdrug effects

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