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The traditionally classified nutritionally non-essential amino acids are now known to be insufficiently synthesized for maximal growth and optimal health in piglets. This study determined the effects of dietary supplementation with an amino acid blend (AAB; glutamate:glutamine:glycine:arginine:N-acetylcysteine=5:2:2:1:0.5) on piglet growth performance and intestinal functions. Sixteen piglets (24-day-old) were randomly assigned to a corn and soybean meal-based diet supplemented with 0.99% alanine (isonitrogenous control) or 1% AAB. On day 20 of the trial, blood and intestinal tissue samples were obtained from piglets. Compared with the control, AAB supplementation reduced (P<0.05) diarrhoea incidence; plasma alanine aminotransferase and diamine oxidase activities; intestinal concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, malondialdehyde, and heat shock protein-70, and intestinal mRNA levels for interleukin-1, interferon-, and chemokine (C-X-C motif) ligand-9; and the numbers of Enterobacterium family, Enterococcus genus and Clostridium coccoides in the colon digesta. Furthermore, AAB supplementation enhanced (P<0.05): the plasma concentrations of serine, aspartate, glutamate, cysteine, tyrosine, phenylalanine, tryptophan, lysine, arginine, citrulline, ornithine, taurine, and -aminobutyric acid; intestinal villus height and surface area, villus height/crypt depth ratio, antioxidative enzyme activities, and mRNA levels for porcine -defensin-1, sodium-independent amino acid transporters (b0,+AT and y+LAT1), aquaporin (AQP) 3, AQP8, AQP10, nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 and glutathione S-transferase omega-2, and protein abundances of AQP3, AQP4, claudin-1, occludin and myxovirus resistance 1; and the numbers of Bifidobacterium genus and Lactobacillus genus in the colon digesta. Collectively, these comprehensive results indicate that dietary AAB supplementation plays an important role in improving piglet growth and intestinal function.
author list (cited authors)
Yi, D., Li, B., Hou, Y., Wang, L., Zhao, D. i., Chen, H., ... Wu, G.