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      Effects of Diets Containing Finger Millet Straw and Corn Straw on Growth Performance, Plasma Metabolites, Immune Capacity, and Carcass Traits in Fattening Lambs

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          Abstract

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          As the byproduct of crops, straw is an important roughage resource in sheep production in rural areas. Finger millet straw crop has widely been planted in arid and semi-arid area of the world. However, little is known about the effect of mixed diets containing millet straw and corn straw on the production of fattening lambs. This research evaluated the effect of whole mix diet concentrate and roughage containing different proportions of millet straw and corn straw on the growth performance, blood metabolites, immune capacity, and carcass traits of lambs. The results proved the feeding effect of millet straw substituted for 50% of corn straw in fattening lambs.

          Abstract

          As the byproduct of finger millet, millet straw is a new forage resource of ruminants. The effect of the combined utilization of millet straw with corn straw on fattening lamb production is seldom reported. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of different proportions of millet straw instead of corn straw on the growth performance, blood metabolites, immune response, meat yield, and quality of fattening lamb. Sixty-three-month-old healthy Small-Tailed Han sheep crossbred rams with an average initial weight of 19.28 ± 2.95 kg were randomly divided into four groups, with three replicates in each group and five lambs in each replicate. The replacement ratio of millet straw of each group (Group Ⅰ, Ⅱ, Ⅲ, Ⅳ) was 0%, 25%, 35%, 50% at the first stage (the first two months) and 0%, 20%, 28%, 40% in the second period (final two months), respectively. The experiment lasted 4 months 10 days of the pre-feeding period. The results indicated that the body weight gain and average daily gain of group Ⅱ were significantly higher than those of group Ⅰ and group Ⅳ ( p < 0.05). The concentration of total protein in group Ⅳ was significantly increased compared to those of the other three groups at the second stage ( p < 0.05), which proved that the protein synthesis metabolism capacity was improved with the addition of millet straw. The concentration of the plasma glutamic-oxalacetic transaminase and lactic dehydrogenase of lambs was significantly decreased in group Ⅱ ( p < 0.05). The combination of millet straw and corn straw had no impact on the glucose, total cholesterol, and triglycerides metabolism ( p > 0.05). There was no significant difference in the pre-slaughter weight, carcass weight, dressing percentage, loin-eye area, and GR value among the four groups ( p > 0.05). Furthermore, the immune response and meat quality were not impacted by the different proportions of millet and corn forage diets. The results showed that the combined utilization of millet straw with corn straw could improve the blood biochemistry metabolism capability of fattening lambs. The replacement of 50% of corn straw with millet straw could improve the growth performance and be an application in fattening lamb production.

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          Most cited references 45

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          Some biochemical aspects pertaining to beef eating quality and consumer health: A review

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            Effect of adding a mycotoxin-sequestering agent on milk aflatoxin M₁ concentration and the performance and immune response of dairy cattle fed an aflatoxin B₁-contaminated diet.

            This project aimed to examine the effects of adding 2 doses of a montmorillonite-based mycotoxin adsorbent on milk aflatoxin M(1) (AFM(1)) concentrations and the performance and innate immune response of dairy cows fed an aflatoxin B(1) (AFB(1))-contaminated diet. Eight lactating cows were used in a duplicated 4×4 Latin square design with 12-d periods. Treatments included the following: (1) control diet (C), (2) aflatoxin diet (T) containing C and 75 µg of AFB(1)/kg, 3) low-clay (LC) diet containing T and Calibrin A (Amlan International, Chicago, IL) added at 0.2% of the diet dry matter (DM), and 4) high-clay diet (HC) containing T and Calibrin A added at 1% of the diet DM. Milk production and DM intake were recorded daily and milk was sampled twice daily on d 5, 9, 10, 11, and 12 in each period. Blood samples were collected on d 5 and 9 of each period. Dietary treatments did not affect DM intake, milk yield, or feed efficiency. Even though cows were limit fed, feeding T instead of C reduced milk fat yield (0.67 vs. 0.74 kg/d) and milk protein concentration (3.28 vs. 3.36%). Concentrations of AFM(1) in milk of cows fed the T and LC diets were similar (0.57 and 0.64 µg/kg) and greater than those of cows fed the HC diet (0.46 µg/kg). Haptoglobin concentration was greater (22.0 vs. 14.4) and β(2)-integrin expression (220 vs. 131) tended to be greater in cows fed diet T instead of C, but values for cows fed LC, HC, and C did not differ. In comparison to C, feeding T increased the innate immune response and decreased milk fat yield and milk protein concentration, but feeding LC and HC did not affect these measures. Only the HC diet reduced milk AFM(1) concentration.
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              Administration of distillate thyme leaves into the diet of Segureña ewes: effect on lamb meat quality

              The effect of including thyme by-products from the distillation industry into the diet of pregnant ewes on the final quality of lamb meat was evaluated during meat storage in modified atmosphere. A total of 36 Segureña ewes were randomly assigned to three homogeneous groups. One group was fed a basal diet ( BD ) as control ( C ), whereas the diet of the other two groups was modified by substituting 10% ( T 1 ) and 20% ( T 2 ) of the BD with pellets made from 50% barley and 50% distilled thyme leaves ( DTL ). Meat spoilage (total viable, psychrotroph ( PSY ), moulds and yeasts, Enterobacteriaceae and lactic acid bacteria), thiobarbituric acid reactive substances ( TBARS ), colour ( CIELab coordinates, metmyoglobin) and sensory characteristics of fresh lamb meat packed in modified atmosphere packaging (70% O 2 : 30% CO 2 ) were analysed after storage at 0, 7, 14 and 21 days. In general, the DTL -containing diet inhibited lipid and pigment oxidation in fresh lamb meat. Lower PSY counts and content of secondary oxidation product ( TBARS ) as a result of adding DTL to the ewe diet, whereas surface redness ( a * values) was significantly higher on days 7 and 14. It can be concluded that thyme by-products from the distillation industry could be used as a source of natural antioxidant and antimicrobial in the feed for ewes.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Animals (Basel)
                Animals (Basel)
                animals
                Animals : an Open Access Journal from MDPI
                MDPI
                2076-2615
                28 July 2020
                August 2020
                : 10
                : 8
                Affiliations
                [1 ]College of Animal Science and Technology, Hebei Agricultural University, Baoding 071001, China; rongyanzhou@ 123456126.com (R.Z.); tsj7890@ 123456126.com (S.T.)
                [2 ]College of Life Science and Food Engineering, Hebei University of Engineering, Handan 056038, China; mihao137604660@ 123456163.com (H.M.); zhangly056000@ 123456126.com (L.Z.)
                [3 ]Feed Research Institute, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Beijing 100081, China; cuikai@ 123456caas.cn
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: chenxiaoyong@ 123456hebau.edu.cn ; Tel.: +86-0312-7528451
                Article
                animals-10-01285
                10.3390/ani10081285
                7459585
                32731442
                © 2020 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

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