Effect of abomasal prebiotic supplementation on sheep faecal microbiota

The effect of abomasal fructo-oligosaccharides supplementation on sheep faecal microbiota was investigated in a balanced, two Latin square, cross-over design experiment. Ten fistulated sheep were managed in five consecutive periods, with each of five treatments (an 'acidified saline' control or one of four prebiotic candidates chosen to represent different types of oligosaccharides: Arabinogalactan, Fibruline, Raftilose, or Yacon) administered to two sheep in each period. Seven grams of fructo-oligosaccharides were used daily for each animal. In each period, fresh faecal samples were collected before, during and after 'supplementation' for the analysis of bifidobacteria, lactobacilli, Escherichia coli, sulphite-reducing clostridia, total anaerobes, pH and dry matter. The treatments with Fibruline, Raftilose and Yacon increased the sheep faecal bifidobacteria after 9 days of daily dosing. Compared with the control, the Raftilose treatment caused the greatest increase by 2.128 log10 CFU/g of faeces (P<0.01), followed by the Yacon and Fibruline treatments, by 0.990 (P<0.05) and 0.925 log10 CFU/g of faeces (P=0.05), respectively. Both Raftilose and Yacon treatments increased the number of lactobacilli by 1.286 (P<0.05) and 1.138 log10 CFU/g of faeces (P<0.05) after 9 days of daily dosing. All tested fructo-oligosaccharides had no effect on sulphite-reducing clostridia and E. coli. There were no changes in sheep faecal pH or dry matter between the treatments. These data provide the first evidence that the bifidogenic effects of fructo-oligosaccharides, previously shown to be gained in the large intestine of monogastric animals, are also efficacious in the ruminant.
Journal Article
Type of thesis
Li, Y., Mills, J., Jacobson, L.H., Manley-Harris, M., le Roux, G.J. & Bell, R.G. (2010). Effect of abomasal prebiotic supplementation on sheep faecal microbiota. New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research, 53(2), 99-108.
Taylor & Francis
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