Fungal Fermented Rye delivers prebiotic effect in Broiler and Feed Additives shown to support intestinal integrity and performance

8 April 2019

5 April, 2019, Amersfoort, the Netherlands— During the 6th Conference on Poultry Intestinal Health (IHSIG), April 3-5, 2019 in Rome, Italy, Trouw Nutrition presented research on how novel feed ingredients and combinations of feed additives can help poultry producers achieve antibiotic reduction goals while supporting bird health, performance and producer economics.   

 

Novel feed ingredient innovation: Fermented rye shows prebiotic effect in caecal microbiota of broilers

Research has demonstrated that different classes and combinations of feed additives can reduce shedding of bacteria and help support broilers’ gut health. For example, the pathogen adhesion inhibitory and immunomodulatory properties of fungal fermented products and their derivatives may play a role in replacing antibiotics in broiler diets. During IHSIG, Trouw Nutrition researchers reviewed studies showing how the prebiotic activity of fungal fermented rye modulated the microbiota and enriched Bifidobacterium population in broilers’ guts.

 

Comparing the caecal microbiota content between a control group and birds receiving fungal fermented products, researchers noted differences among various bacterial populations. Birds receiving fermented rye showed increased bacterial diversity. Specifically, the population of Bifidobacterium in birds receiving fermented rye was 6% compared to a control group at 1% (P<0.05). (Figure 1).

This prebiotic stimulation of specific Bifidobacterium population may be beneficial for birds. Furthermore, Salmonella counts were numerically lower for birds in the fermented rye group compared to birds in the control group. Additionally, the control group differed significantly with regards to the presence of the Clostridium piliforme Tyzzers bacillus which was detected in 0.0025% of control group birds. The bacteria Clostridium piliforme Tyzzers bacillus was not detected in birds receiving the fermented rye additive

 

“Ultimately, animal health drives animal performance and is determined by a close interaction between feed, intestinal microbiota, gut wall integrity and immunity,” said Petra Roubos, PhD, Trouw Nutrition R&D Manager, presenting at IHSIG.  “If intestinal health is compromised, the microbiota that play an important role in supporting digestion and nutrient absorption will be affected and more nutrients will be directed to repairing enterocytes, producing mucus and maintaining immune response. Research on emerging innovations such as how fermented rye may support prebiotic activity by changing the microbiota may help optimise animal performance.”

 

Feed additives maintain intestinal quality and support broiler performance compared to in-feed antibiotics

During IHSIG, Trouw Nutrition presented a trial conducted by a university in India. The study validated the effect on broiler performance of a feed additives blend including medium chain fatty acids, slow release C12, target release butyrates, organic acids and a phenolic compound, compared to birds receiving in-feed antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs). The trial was conducted in a production system under tropical conditions where AGPs are still used. Findings from the trial suggest that feed additives can enhance intestinal health and subsequently improve feed efficiency and stimulate growth performance in broilers. The dietary supplementation of feed additives exerted a positive effect on villus height and changes in gut microbial population by promoting the proliferation of Lactobacillus, while significantly reducing caecal E. coli counts (Figure 2).  This effect supported a functional gut by allowing nutrients to be efficiently absorbed and making more energy available for growth. As a result, broilers receiving feed additives blend showed better performance with three percent higher body weight gain and six points lower FCR compared to broilers receiving AGP diets (Figure 3). Researchers presenting at IHSIG noted these findings demonstrate that the application of feed additives can support efficient broiler growth without AGPs. 

 

Histology Studies Suggest Feed Additives Boost Absorption Capacity

Also during IHSIG, Trouw Nutrition presented histology studies showing the effects of feed additives included in broiler diets compared to a control group. A study showed feed additives resulted in less activation of birds’ immune systems and helped make a larger gut surface area available for optimal digestion and nutrient absorption. The study further showed a lower amount of gut associated lymphoid tissue (GALT) in the caeca compared to the control group. Fusion of villi decreases the surface area resulting in less tissue available for absorption of nutrients and excretion of digestive enzymes. Research showed that using a gut health additive was effective in maintaining villi length, with a lower percentage of villus fusion in the ileum.

 

The research findings presented at IHSIG are particularly relevant in key poultry producing regions transitioning away from antibiotics, according to Barbara Brutsaert, DVM, Global Programme Manager Poultry Gut Health. “The consumption of antimicrobials in Asia is expected to increase and is prompting legislative initiatives in countries such as India and China. While feed additives are increasingly viewed as part of a nutritional strategy for achieving antibiotic reduction goals, concern has arisen whether controlled studies translate to actual conditions on farms,” Dr. Brutsaert said. “Combined with studies conducted in research centres, commercial studies in the field help validate the benefits feed additives can deliver as producers transition away from antibiotics.”  

Figure 1. The population of Bifidobacterium in birds receiving fermented rye was significantly higher compared to a control group  

Figure 1. The population of Bifidobacterium in birds receiving fermented rye was significantly higher compared to a control group

 

Figure 2. The Lactobacillus counts was significantly higher in FA and AGP compared to the control.  Dietary supplementation of FA significantly reduced E. coli counts better than AGP and control treatments.

Figure 2. The Lactobacillus counts was significantly higher in FA and AGP compared to the control.  Dietary supplementation of FA significantly reduced E. coli counts better than AGP and control treatments.

Figure 3. Dietary supplementation of FA significantly increased body weight gain by 3‒4% and reduced FCR by 6‒8 points in relation to control and AGP (P<0.05).

Figure 3. Dietary supplementation of FA significantly increased body weight gain by 3‒4% and reduced FCR by 6‒8 points in relation to control and AGP (P<0.05).

This press release got picked up by Feed Navigator, Friday 26th of April, 2019. Please click here to read.