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Models for estimating digesta passage kinetics in the gastrointestinal tract of the horse

Rosenfeld, I., Austbø, D., Volden, H.
Journal of animal science 2006 v.84 no.12 pp. 3321-3328
simulation models, oats, cecum, hay, feces, gastrointestinal transit, digesta, feed processing, feed formulation, animal feeding, kinetics, horses, excretion, colon
Fecal samples were collected to evaluate mathematical models to describe the kinetics of digesta passage in the segments of the equine gastrointestinal tract and to compare the passage kinetics of hay and oats. Four Norwegian Cold-blooded trotters (cecally cannulated, approximately 500 kg of BW) were fed Cr-mordanted hay and Yb-marked oats with their morning meal. The meal consisted of 2 kg of hay and 1 kg of oats processed as ground, pelleted, extruded, or micronized. Each horse was fed each type of oats on different days of collection, after a 5-d adaptation period, in a 4 x 4 Latin square design. Fecal samples were collected 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, 36, 38, 48, and 52 h after administration of the marker dose. The samples were analyzed for Cr and Yb, and values were plotted using 1- and 2-compartment nonlinear passage models and an algebraic model. The 1-compartment G4 model and the 2-compartment G4G1 model showed an equally good fit to the observed excretion curves, based on low mean square error and SE. The excretion curves for hay (Cr) and oats (Yb) showed a striking similarity, and there seemed to be no difference in retention time between hay and oats in the horse. The mixing compartments in the horse are believed to be the cecum or both the cecum and the right ventral and dorsal segments of the colon, but further research in this area is needed to make a final conclusion.