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Oral administration of synthetic porcine beta‐defensin‐2 improves growth performance and cecal microbial flora and down‐regulates the expression of intestinal toll‐like receptor‐4 and inflammatory cytokines in weaned piglets challenged with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli

Tang, Zhiru, Xu, Ling, Shi, Baoshi, Deng, Huang, Lai, Xin, Liu, Jingyan, Sun, Zhihong
Animal science journal = 2016 v.87 no.10 pp. 1258-1266
Bacteroides fragilis, Bifidobacterium, Lactobacillus, Streptococcus, Toll-like receptor 4, antimicrobial properties, digesta, enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli, growth performance, insulin-like growth factor I, interleukin-8, jejunum, messenger RNA, neomycin, oral administration, piglets, probiotics, swine production, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, villi
Synthetic porcine beta‐defensin‐2 (pBD‐2) was tested as an alternative to antimicrobial growth‐promoters in pig production. Thirty 21‐day weaned piglets were challenged with enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli, and orally dosed with either sterile water (CON), pBD‐2 (BD) or neomycin sulphate (NS) twice daily for 21 days. pBD‐2 and NS led to higher growth performance, jejunum villus height and increased expression of insulin‐like growth factor‐I compared with the CON group (P < 0.05). Hemolytic E. coli scores from rectal swabs, and copy numbers of E. coli, Bacteroides fragilis and Streptococcus in the cecal digesta of the BD‐ or NS‐treated piglets were lower than those in the CON group (P < 0.05). Messenger RNA levels of toll‐like receptor 4, tumor necrosis factor‐α, interleukin (IL)‐1β, and IL‐8 in the jejunum mucosa of the BD and NS groups were lower than those in the CON group (P < 0.05). Copy numbers of Lactobacilli and Bifidobacteria in the cecal digesta of the BD group were higher than those of the CON and NS groups (P < 0.05). Therefore, pBD‐2 has antimicrobial activity in piglets, and it can improve growth performance, reduce inflammatory cytokine expression and affect intestinal morphological indices in the same way as probiotics. © 2015 Japanese Society of Animal Science