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Apparent ruminal synthesis of B vitamins in lactating dairy cows fed diets with different forage-to-concentrate ratios

Seck, M., Linton, J.A. Voelker, Allen, M.S., Castagnino, D.S., Chouinard, P.Y., Girard, C.L.
Journal of dairy science 2017 v.100 no.3 pp. 1914-1922
Holstein, absorption, cannulas, correlation, cross-over studies, dairy cows, digesta, dry matter intake, folic acid, forage, ingredients, lactating females, lactation, neutral detergent fiber, niacin, pyridoxine, riboflavin, rumen, small intestine, starch, thiamin, vitamin B12
Effects of the forage-to-concentrate ratio on apparent ruminal synthesis of thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, folates, and vitamin B12 were evaluated in an experiment using 14 ruminally and duodenally cannulated Holstein cows. The experiment was a crossover design with two 15-d treatment periods and a 14-d preliminary period in which cows were fed a diet intermediate in composition between the treatment diets. Treatments were diets containing low-forage (44.8% forage, 32.8% starch, 24.4% neutral detergent fiber) or high-forage (61.4% forage, 22.5% starch, 30.7% neutral detergent fiber) concentrations. Both diets were formulated with different proportions of the same ingredients. Concentrations of B vitamins were analyzed in feed and duodenal digesta. Apparent ruminal synthesis of each B vitamin was calculated as the duodenal flow minus the intake. The high-forage diet had the highest concentrations of riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, and folates, whereas the low-forage diet had the highest thiamine concentration. Vitamin B12 in the diets was under the level of detection. Consequently, despite a reduction in dry matter intake when the cows were fed the high-forage diet, increasing dietary forage concentration increased or tended to increase intakes of riboflavin, niacin, and vitamin B6 but reduced thiamine and folate intakes. Increasing dietary forage concentration reduced apparent ruminal degradation of thiamine and apparent ruminal synthesis of riboflavin, niacin, and folates and increased ruminal degradation of vitamin B6, but had no effect on ruminal synthesis of vitamin B12. As a consequence, increasing the forage-to-concentrate ratio had no effect on the amounts of thiamine, riboflavin, and vitamin B12 reaching the small intestine but decreased the amounts of niacin, vitamin B6, and folates available for absorption. Apparent ruminal syntheses of riboflavin, niacin, folates, and vitamin B12 were correlated positively with the amount of starch digested in the rumen and duodenal flow of microbial N, whereas these correlations were negative for thiamine. Apparent ruminal syntheses of thiamine and vitamin B6 were negatively correlated with their respective intakes, whereas folate intake was positively correlated with its synthesis in the rumen.