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Effects of L‐methionine on performance, gut morphology and antioxidant status in gut and liver of piglets in relation to DL‐methionine

Zeitz, Johanna O., Kaltenböck, Susanne, Most, Erika, Eder, Klaus
Journal of animal physiology and animal nutrition 2019 v.103 no.1 pp. 242-250
absorption barrier, antioxidant activity, antioxidants, body weight, duodenum, enzyme activation, enzyme activity, feed intake, genes, glutathione, glutathione peroxidase, intestinal mucosa, jejunum, lipids, liver, messenger RNA, piglets, proteins, slaughter, superoxide dismutase, thiobarbituric acid-reactive substances, tight junctions, villi
This study investigated the hypothesis that dietary supplementation of L‐methionine (L‐Met) in weaned piglets in relation to DL‐methionine (DL‐Met) results in a higher antioxidant status and lower need for antioxidant enzyme activation in intestinal epithelium and body tissues, and improves gut morphology and gut barrier function as well as performance. A total of 99 early‐weaned 21‐day old piglets were allotted to six groups and fed a semi‐synthetic wheat–barley‐based basal diet supplemented with 0.067%, 0.107% and 0.147% of either DL‐Met (MetAmino; Evonik, Hanau, Germany) or L‐Met (L‐Met100; CJ Europe, Schwalbach am Taunus, Germany) to reach dietary Met concentrations of 0.16%, 0.20% and 0.24%, of which the latter met the requirements for maintenance and growth based on a pre‐experiment. Feed intake and body weights were recorded weekly, and samples of plasma, liver and duodenum and jejunum mucosa were collected after 3 weeks at slaughter. Plasma concentrations of L‐Met were similar, and those of D‐Met and total Met were higher in piglets fed DL‐Met in relation to those fed L‐Met. Feed intake, daily gains and feed:gain ratio, and the relative bio‐efficacy based on gains and feed:gain ratio were similar for both groups. Likewise, villi length, crypt depth, the villi length:crypt depth ratio in duodenum and jejunum and gene expression of tight junction proteins in the jejunum did not differ. Concentrations of antioxidants like glutathione and tocopherol, the total antioxidant capacity, the mRNA abundance or activity of antioxidant enzymes like superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase, concentrations of thiobarbituric acid reactive substances, markers for oxidative damage of lipids and the expression of inflammatory genes were similar in liver and jejunum mucosa. These data indicate that the effects of L‐Met and DL‐Met supplementation are comparable considering both piglet performance and parameters of gut health and function like gut morphology and the intestinal antioxidant status.