Next Issue
Volume 10, November
Previous Issue
Volume 10, September

Table of Contents

Animals, Volume 10, Issue 10 (October 2020) – 219 articles

  • Issues are regarded as officially published after their release is announced to the table of contents alert mailing list.
  • You may sign up for e-mail alerts to receive table of contents of newly released issues.
  • PDF is the official format for papers published in both, html and pdf forms. To view the papers in pdf format, click on the "PDF Full-text" link, and use the free Adobe Readerexternal link to open them.
Cover Story (view full-size image) Anchovies and sardines are considered the principal species for commercial fishing in Europe and [...] Read more.
Order results
Result details
Select all
Export citation of selected articles as:
Open AccessCommunication
Frequency of Blood Types A, B and AB in a Population of Non-Pedigree Domestic Cats from Central Italy
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1937; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101937 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 235
Abstract
Blood transfusion reactions and neonatal isoerythrolysis are common events in the feline population due to the presence of natural alloantibodies in the AB blood group system. It is known that the frequency of feline blood types varies according to the geographic region and [...] Read more.
Blood transfusion reactions and neonatal isoerythrolysis are common events in the feline population due to the presence of natural alloantibodies in the AB blood group system. It is known that the frequency of feline blood types varies according to the geographic region and breed. Therefore, the aims of this study were to investigate the frequency of AB blood groups in non-pedigree domestic cats in Central Italy and estimate the risk of a life-threatening transfusion reaction and neonatal isoerythrolysis, caused by mismatched transfusion or incompatible random mating, respectively. The AB blood group was determined on non-pedigree domestic feline patients and potential blood donors submitted at the Veterinary Teaching Hospitals of the Universities of Teramo (Abruzzo Region, Teramo, Italy) and Perugia (Umbria Region, Teramo, Italy), and visited at veterinary practitioners in Rome (Lazio Region, Teramo, Italy) using commercial immunochromatographic cartridges and commercial agglutination cards. There were four hundred and eighty-three cats included in the study. The frequencies of the blood types were: 89.9% type A, 7.0% type B, and 3.1% type AB. The probability of an acute hemolytic transfusion reaction or a neonatal isoerythrolysis was 6.5%. Although the frequency of type B in non-pedigree domestic cats living in Central Italy was relatively low, to reduce the risk of fatal transfusion reactions, blood group typing is recommended before each transfusion. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Hematology and Transfusion Medicine in Animals)
Open AccessArticle
Comparison of Clinical Effectiveness of Deslorelin Acetate and Osaterone Acetate in Dogs with Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1936; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101936 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 235
Abstract
This article presents the results of a randomized clinical trial, designed to compare the efficacy and therapeutic profiles of YpozaneTM (osaterone acetate—OA) or SuprelorinTM (deslorelin acetate—DA) in male dogs with clinical signs of benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). Forty-five intact male dogs [...] Read more.
This article presents the results of a randomized clinical trial, designed to compare the efficacy and therapeutic profiles of YpozaneTM (osaterone acetate—OA) or SuprelorinTM (deslorelin acetate—DA) in male dogs with clinical signs of benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). Forty-five intact male dogs were used in the study. The Group I (negative control) included 10 healthy dogs, the Group II (positive control) included 10 dogs with confirmed BPH and no treatment, whereas Group III and IV consisted of dogs with BPH and treated either with DA (15 dogs) or OA (10 dogs). The clinical response, testosterone and estradiol levels, hematology, biochemistry, and adverse effects incidence were evaluated. Both OA and DA proved to be effective for BPH treatment in dogs, as they allowed for the clinical remission in all treated dogs. The complete alleviation of BPH symptoms was noticed sooner with the use of OA (in 80% of dogs from day 7) compared to DA (in 40% of dogs within the first 21 days). The recurrence of clinical signs related to BPH was observed from week 24 in dogs treated with OA, whereas no relapse was noticed in dogs treated with DA at the end of the 36 weeks of the observation period. In 5 dogs (33%) treated with DA, a flare-up effect (increase in the clinical signs associated with BPH) was noticed on day 7. Despite individual differences in the clinical action, both medications were effective and safe options for the treatment of symptoms related to BPH in dogs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Reproduction)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessReview
Fitting of the In Vitro Gas Production Technique to the Study of High Concentrate Diets
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1935; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101935 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 215
Abstract
In vitro rumen fermentation systems are often adapted to forage feeding conditions, with pH values ranging in a range close to neutrality (between 6.5 and 7.0). Several attempts using different buffers have been made to control incubation pH in order to evaluate microbial [...] Read more.
In vitro rumen fermentation systems are often adapted to forage feeding conditions, with pH values ranging in a range close to neutrality (between 6.5 and 7.0). Several attempts using different buffers have been made to control incubation pH in order to evaluate microbial fermentation under conditions simulating high concentrate feeding, but results have not been completely successful because of rapid exhaustion of buffering capacity. Recently, a modification of bicarbonate ion concentration in the buffer of incubation solution has been proposed, which, together with using rumen inoculum from donor ruminants given high-concentrate diets, allows for mimicking such conditions in vitro. It is important to consider that the gas volume recorded is in part directly produced from microbial fermentation of substrates, but also indirectly from the buffering capacity of the medium. Thus, the contribution of each (direct and indirect) gas source to the overall production should be estimated. Another major factor affecting fermentation is the rate of passage, but closed batch systems cannot be adapted to its consideration. Therefore, a simple semicontinuous incubation system has been developed, which studies the rate and extent of fermentation by gas production at the time it allows for controlling medium pH and rate of passage by manual replacement of incubation medium by fresh saliva without including rumen inoculum. The application of this system to studies using high concentrate feeding conditions will also be reviewed here. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovative Instruments and Methods to Analyse Feedstuffs)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Perfluorooctane Sulfonate (PFOS) and Perfluorohexane Sulfonate (PFHxS) Alters Protein Phosphorylation, Increase ROS Levels and DNA Fragmentation during In Vitro Capacitation of Boar Spermatozoa
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1934; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101934 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 249
Abstract
Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS) are toxic and bioaccumulative, included in the Stockholm Convention’s list as persistent organic pollutants. Due to their toxicity, worldwide distribution, and lack of information in spermatozoa physiology during pre-fertilization processes, the present study seeks to analyze [...] Read more.
Perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorohexane sulfonate (PFHxS) are toxic and bioaccumulative, included in the Stockholm Convention’s list as persistent organic pollutants. Due to their toxicity, worldwide distribution, and lack of information in spermatozoa physiology during pre-fertilization processes, the present study seeks to analyze the toxic effects and possible alterations caused by the presence of these compounds in boar sperm during the in vitro capacitation. The spermatozoa capacitation was performed in supplemented TALP-Hepes media and mean lethal concentration values of 460.55 μM for PFOS, and 1930.60 μM for PFHxS were obtained. Results by chlortetracycline staining showed that intracellular Ca2+ patterns bound to membrane proteins were scarcely affected by PFOS. The spontaneous acrosome reaction determined by FITC-PNA was significantly reduced by PFOS and slightly increased by PFHxS. Both toxic compounds significantly alter the normal capacitation process from 30 min of exposure. An increase in ROS production was observed by flow cytometry and considerable DNA fragmentation by the comet assay. The immunocytochemistry showed a decrease of tyrosine phosphorylation in proteins of the equatorial and acrosomal zone of the spermatozoa head. In conclusion, PFOS and PFHxS have toxic effects on the sperm, causing mortality and altering vital parameters for proper sperm capacitation. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessCommentary
An Anglocentric History of Anaesthetics and Analgesics in the Refinement of Animal Experiments
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1933; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101933 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 247
Abstract
Previous histories of animal experimentation, e.g., Franco (2013) have focused on ethics, the law and the personalities involved, but not on the involvement of anaesthetics or analgesics. Given that these were major subjects of (UK) Parliamentary debates on vivisection in the mid-19th century [...] Read more.
Previous histories of animal experimentation, e.g., Franco (2013) have focused on ethics, the law and the personalities involved, but not on the involvement of anaesthetics or analgesics. Given that these were major subjects of (UK) Parliamentary debates on vivisection in the mid-19th century and viewed as “indisputable refinements in animal experimentation” (Russell and Burch 1959), it seemed that an analysis of their role was overdue. This commentary has, in interweaving the history of animal experimentation in the UK with the evolution of anaesthesia, attempted to: (1) clarify the evidence for Russell and Burch’s view; and (2) evaluate anaesthesia’s ongoing contribution to experimental refinement. The history that emerges reveals that the withholding or misuse of anaesthetics and, or analgesics from laboratory animals in the UK has had a profound effect on scientists and indirectly on the attitudes of the British public in general, becoming a major driver for the establishment of the anti-vivisection movement and subsequently, the Cruelty to Animals Act (1876)—the world’s first legislation for the regulation of animal experimentation. In 1902, the mismanaged anaesthetic of a dog in the Department of Physiology, University College London resulted in numerous events of public disorder initiated by medical students against the police and a political coalition of anti-vivisectionists, trade unionists, socialists, Marxists, liberals and suffragettes. The importance of anaesthesia in animal experiments was sustained over the following 150 years as small mammalian species gradually replaced dogs and cats as the principle subjects for vivisection. In discussing experimental refinement in their 1959 report, “The Principles of Humane Experimental Technique” Russell and Burch described anaesthetics as “… the greatest single advance in humane technique, (which) has at the same time been virtually indispensable for the advance of experimental biology”. Since then, the role of anaesthetics and in particular analgesics has become an unavoidable consideration whenever animal experiments are planned and conducted. This has been accompanied by a proliferation of training and educational programmes in laboratory animal anaesthesia. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Refinements to Animal Models for Biomedical Research)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
“HerdGPS-Preprocessor”—A Tool to Preprocess Herd Animal GPS Data; Applied to Evaluate Contact Structures in Loose-Housing Horses
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1932; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101932 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 194
Abstract
Sensors delivering information on the position of farm animals have been widely used in precision livestock farming. Global Positioning System (GPS) sensors are already known from applications in military, private and commercial environments, and their application in animal science is increasing. However, as [...] Read more.
Sensors delivering information on the position of farm animals have been widely used in precision livestock farming. Global Positioning System (GPS) sensors are already known from applications in military, private and commercial environments, and their application in animal science is increasing. However, as trade-offs between sensor cost, battery life and sensor weight have to be made, GPS based studies scheduling long data collection periods and including a high number of animals, have to deal with problems like high hardware costs and data disruption during recharging of sensors. Furthermore, human–animal interaction due to sensor changing at the end of battery life interferes with the animal behaviour under analysis. The present study thus proposes a setting to deal with these challenges and offers the software tool “HerdGPS-Preprocessor”, because collecting position data from multiple animals nonstop for several weeks produces a high amount of raw data which needs to be sorted, preprocessed and provided in a suitable format per animal and day. The software tool “HerdGPS-Preprocessor” additionally outputs contact lists to enable a straight analysis of animal contacts. The software tool was exemplarily deployed for one month of daily and continuous GPS data of 40 horses in a loose-housing boarding facility in northern Germany. Contact lists were used to generate separate networks for every hour, which are then analysed with regard to the network parameter density, diameter and clique structure. Differences depending on the day and the day time could be observed. More dense networks with more and larger cliques were determined in the hours prior to the opening of additional pasture. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Animal Activity in Farms)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Reduction of Salmonella Typhimurium Cecal Colonisation and Improvement of Intestinal Health in Broilers Supplemented with Fermented Defatted ‘Alperujo’, an Olive Oil By-Product
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1931; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101931 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 298
Abstract
Salmonella spp. contaminates egg and poultry meat leading to foodborne infections in humans. The emergence of antimicrobial-resistant strains has limited the use of antimicrobials. We aimed to determine the effects of the food supplement, fermented defatted ‘alperujo’ (FDA), a modified olive oil by-product, [...] Read more.
Salmonella spp. contaminates egg and poultry meat leading to foodborne infections in humans. The emergence of antimicrobial-resistant strains has limited the use of antimicrobials. We aimed to determine the effects of the food supplement, fermented defatted ‘alperujo’ (FDA), a modified olive oil by-product, on Salmonella Typhimurium colonisation in broilers. One hundred and twenty 1-day-old broilers were divided into four experimental groups—two control groups and two treated groups, and challenged with S. Typhimurium at day 7 or 21. On days 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, and 42 of life, duodenum and cecum tissue samples were collected for histopathological and histomorphometric studies. Additionally, cecum content was collected for Salmonella spp. detection by culture and qPCR, and for metagenomic analysis. Our results showed a significant reduction of Salmonella spp. in the cecum of 42-day-old broilers, suggesting that fermented defatted ‘alperujo’ limits Salmonella Typhimurium colonization in that cecum and may contribute to diminishing the risk of carcass contamination at the time of slaughter. The improvement of the mucosal integrity, observed histologically and morphometrically, may contribute to enhancing intestinal health and to limiting Salmonella spp. colonisation in the host, mitigating production losses. These results could provide evidence that FDA would contribute to prophylactic and therapeutic measures to reduce salmonellosis prevalence in poultry farms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Gut Health in Poultry)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Quercetin and Naringenin Provide Functional and Antioxidant Protection to Stored Boar Semen
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1930; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101930 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 224
Abstract
In this study, we evaluated the impact of 5–50 μM quercetin (QUE) and naringenin (NAR) on extended boar spermatozoa in the BTS (Beltsville Thawing Solution) medium for 72 h. Spermatozoa motion, membrane, acrosome, and DNA integrity were investigated immediately after sample dilution (0 [...] Read more.
In this study, we evaluated the impact of 5–50 μM quercetin (QUE) and naringenin (NAR) on extended boar spermatozoa in the BTS (Beltsville Thawing Solution) medium for 72 h. Spermatozoa motion, membrane, acrosome, and DNA integrity were investigated immediately after sample dilution (0 h) as well as after 24 h, 48 h, and 72 h of semen storage. Furthermore, reactive oxygen species (ROS) and superoxide production, as well as the extent of oxidative damage to the sperm proteins and lipids, were assessed to determine the potential of QUE and NAR to prevent a potential loss of sperm vitality due to oxidative stress development. Our results indicate that the most notable parameter influenced by QUE was the mitochondrial activity, which remained significantly higher throughout the experiment (p < 0.001 and p < 0.0001; 10 μM), and which correlated with the most prominent maintenance of sperm motility (p < 0.01, 48 h; p < 0.05, 72 h). A significant membrane stabilization (p < 0.01, 24 h and 48 h; p < 0.0001, 72 h) and prevention of lipid peroxidation (p < 0.05, 24 h and 48 h; p < 0.01, 72 h) was primarily observed following administration of 10 and 25 μM NAR; respectively. Administration of 10 μM QUE led to a significant decrease of superoxide (p < 0.0001, 48 h and 72 h) while the most notable decline of ROS generation was recorded in the case of 10 and 25 μM NAR (p < 0.001). This study may provide new information on the specific mechanisms of action involved in the favorable effects of natural biomolecules on spermatozoa. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Reproduction)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Molecular Characterization and Developing a Point-of-Need Molecular Test for Diagnosis of Bovine Papillomavirus (BPV) Type 1 in Cattle from Egypt
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1929; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101929 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 268
Abstract
Bovine papillomatosis is a viral disease of cattle causing cutaneous warts. A diagnosis of this viral infection is very mandatory for combating the resulting economic losses. Given the limited data available about bovine papillomavirus (BPV) in Egypt, the present study involved the molecular [...] Read more.
Bovine papillomatosis is a viral disease of cattle causing cutaneous warts. A diagnosis of this viral infection is very mandatory for combating the resulting economic losses. Given the limited data available about bovine papillomavirus (BPV) in Egypt, the present study involved the molecular diagnosis of bovine papillomavirus type-1 (BPV-1), -2, -4, -5, and -10 in cattle presenting cutaneous warts on the head and neck from New Valley Province, Egypt. The phylogenetic analysis of the detected types of BPV was also performed, followed by developing a point-of-need molecular assay for the rapid identification of identified BPV types. In this regard, a total of 308 cattle from private farms in Egypt were clinically examined, of which 13 animals presented cutaneous warts due to suspected BPV infection. The symptomatic animals were treated surgically, and biopsies from skin lesions were collected for BPV-1, -2, -4, -5, and -10 molecular identification using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). The presence of BPV-1 DNA was confirmed in 11 collected samples (84.6%), while BPV-2, -4, -5, and -10 were not detected. Sequencing of the PCR products suggested the Egyptian virus is closely related to BPV found in India. An isothermal nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) with labeled primers specific for the BPV-1 L1 gene sequence, and based on recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA), in combination with a lateral flow strip assay for the detection of RPA products, was developed and tested. The point-of-need molecular assay demonstrated a diagnostic utility comparable to PCR-based testing. Taken together, the present study provides interesting molecular data related to the occurrence of BPV-1 in Egypt and reveals the genetic relatedness of the Egyptian BPV-1 with BPV-1 found in buffalo in India. In addition, a simple, low-cost combined test was also validated for diagnosis of the infection. The present study suggests the necessity of future investigations about the circulating strains of the virus among the cattle in Egypt to assess their genetic relatedness and better understand the epidemiological pattern of the disease. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Effect of Tourist Activities on Fecal and Salivary Glucocorticoids and Immunoglobulin A in Female Captive Asian Elephants in Thailand
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1928; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101928 - 21 Oct 2020
Viewed by 353
Abstract
Asian elephants have been an important part of wildlife ecotourism in Thailand for over two decades. Elephants in tourist camps are exposed to a variety of management styles and daily activities that can potentially affect health and welfare. This study investigated relationships between [...] Read more.
Asian elephants have been an important part of wildlife ecotourism in Thailand for over two decades. Elephants in tourist camps are exposed to a variety of management styles and daily activities that can potentially affect health and welfare. This study investigated relationships between a novel welfare biomarker, immunoglobulin A (IgA), and daily camp activities, and compared results to glucocorticoid (GC) measures. Often no-riding camps are portrayed as providing better welfare than camps that offer riding. Therefore, we predicted that elephants at no-riding camps would have lower GC and higher IgA concentrations, and a low GC/IgA ratio. Forty-four female elephants from six elephant camps were divided into three groups based on riding activities: saddle-riding, bareback-riding, and no-riding. Fecal and salivary samples were collected monthly for 1 year along with evaluations of body condition, foot health, and wounding. Camp environment and management varied among camps, although the major difference was in riding activities. Concentrations of GCs and IgA varied among the working groups, but not always consistently between sample matrices. Overall fecal glucocorticoid metabolite concentrations were lowest in the saddle-riding group. Only in one bareback-riding camp did the elephants exhibit a potentially positive welfare response with a low GC/IgA ratio over time. Other results varied between the two biomarkers, with considerable variability across camps, suggesting there is more to good welfare than whether elephants participate in riding or not. Several other human-induced stressors, like chaining, ankus use, and limited social opportunities are likely to be impacting well-being and should be considered to ensure management practices meet physical and psychological welfare needs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Wildlife)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Morphometric Characteristics of the Spermatozoa of Blue Fox (Alopex lagopus) and Silver Fox (Vulpes vulpes)
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1927; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101927 - 20 Oct 2020
Viewed by 227
Abstract
The results presented in this study are the first such extensive characterization of the sperm morphometry of the blue fox (Alopex lagopus) and silver fox (Vulpes vulpes), as representatives of the family Canidae. Canine spermatozoa, especially the sperm of [...] Read more.
The results presented in this study are the first such extensive characterization of the sperm morphometry of the blue fox (Alopex lagopus) and silver fox (Vulpes vulpes), as representatives of the family Canidae. Canine spermatozoa, especially the sperm of farmed foxes, are not often described in studies on reproduction. The aim of the study was a detailed comparison of the morphometric dimensions and shape of the sperm of two fox species: silver fox and blue fox. Semen collected from 10 silver foxes and 10 blue foxes was used for the study. The specimens were stained with silver nitrate. Measurements were performed of the length, width, perimeter, and area of the head; the area of the acrosome and its coverage; the length of the midpiece and its coverage; the length of the tail; and the length of the end piece of the tail. In addition, four head shape indices were calculated: ellipticity, elongation, roughness and regularity. The following values for the morphometric parameters and shape indices were obtained for blue fox and silver fox, respectively: head length—6.72 µm and 6.33 µm; head width—4.54.µm and 4.21 µm; head perimeter—18.11 µm and 17.37 µm; head area—21.94 µm2 and 21.11 µm2; acrosome area—11.50 µm2 and 10.92 µm2; midpiece length—12.85 µm and 12.79 µm; tail end piece length—3.44 µm and 3.28 µm; tail length—65.23 µm and 65.09 µm; acrosome coverage—52.43% and 52.83%; midpiece coverage—19.71% and 19.65%; sperm length—71.95 µm and 71.42 µm; ellipticity—1.49 and 1.52; elongation—0.19 and 0.20; roughness—0.84 and 1.88; regularity—1.09 and 0.99. The significance of differences between species was verified by Tukey’s test at p ≤ 0.05. Statistically significant differences between species were found for the following parameters: head length, width, perimeter and area; acrosome area; tail, end piece, and total sperm length; roughness and regularity. The differences in the size and shape of sperm can be used to establish reference patterns for fox sperm enabling more accurate species identification. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Reproduction)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
A Novel Corn-Expressed Phytase Improves Daily Weight Gain, Protein Efficiency Ratio and Nutrients Digestibility and Alters Fecal Microbiota in Pigs Fed with Very Low Protein Diets
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1926; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101926 - 20 Oct 2020
Viewed by 247
Abstract
The objective of this study was to assess the effect of a novel corn-expressed phytase (CEP) on growth, nutrients digestibility, bone characteristics and fecal microbiota of pigs fed with very low-protein, -calcium (Ca) and -phosphorous (P) diets. Forty-eight barrows were subjected to 6 [...] Read more.
The objective of this study was to assess the effect of a novel corn-expressed phytase (CEP) on growth, nutrients digestibility, bone characteristics and fecal microbiota of pigs fed with very low-protein, -calcium (Ca) and -phosphorous (P) diets. Forty-eight barrows were subjected to 6 groups for 4 weeks: positive control-adequate protein (PC), negative control-reduced protein (NC), NC + low-dose CEP, i.e., 2000 FTU/kg (LD), NC + high-dose CEP, i.e., 4000 FTU/kg (HD), LD with 0.12% unit reduced Ca and 0.15% unit reduced available P (LDR), and HD with 0.12% unit reduced Ca and 0.15% unit reduced available P (HDR). Compared to NC, LD and HDR had a higher average daily gain (ADG) and gain:protein ratio (G:P), HD and HDR had greater apparent fecal digestibility of Ca and P and bone mineral density and LDR and HDR had lower serum osteocalcin. The feces of LD was enriched in Lachnospiraceae, while the HD had a higher abundance of Succinvibrio and LDR had a higher abundance of Bifidobacterium and Actinobacteria. In conclusion, supplementation of protein-restricted diets with a CEP decreased their negative effects on ADG and G:P ratio, increased the digestibility of Ca and P regardless of the levels of these minerals in the diet, improved bone characteristics and produced differential effects on fecal bacterial population. Full article
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle
Assessment of Acute-Phase Protein Response Associated with the Different Pathological Forms of Bovine Paratuberculosis
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1925; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101925 - 20 Oct 2020
Viewed by 284
Abstract
In this study, the concentrations of two acute-phase proteins (APPs), haptoglobin (Hp) and serum amyloid A (SAA), were quantitatively assessed in serum samples from cattle naturally infected with paratuberculosis (PTB). APP profiles were compared across 190 animals classified according to the different pathological [...] Read more.
In this study, the concentrations of two acute-phase proteins (APPs), haptoglobin (Hp) and serum amyloid A (SAA), were quantitatively assessed in serum samples from cattle naturally infected with paratuberculosis (PTB). APP profiles were compared across 190 animals classified according to the different pathological forms associated with infection: uninfected (n = 59), with focal lesions (n = 73), multifocal lesions (n = 19), and diffuse paucibacillary (n = 11) and diffuse multibacillary lesions (n = 28). Our results showed a significant increase in both APPs in infected animals compared to the control group, with differences depending on the type of lesion. Hp and SAA levels were increased significantly in all infected animals, except in cows with diffuse multibacillary lesions that showed similar values to non-infected animals. The expression pattern of both APPs was similar and negatively correlated with the antibody levels against PTB. These results indicate that the release of Hp and SAA is related to the presence of PTB lesions associated with a high cell-mediated immune response and a lower bacterial load, suggesting that the pro-inflammatory cytokines that are associated with these forms are the main stimulus for their synthesis. These molecules could show some potential to be used as putative biomarkers of PTB infection, particularly for the identification of subclinical animals showing pathological forms related to latency or resistance to the development of advanced lesions. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Ovarian Transcriptomic Analysis Reveals Differential Expression Genes Associated with Cell Death Process after Selection for Ovulation Rate in Rabbits
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1924; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101924 - 20 Oct 2020
Viewed by 226
Abstract
Litter size is an essential trait in rabbit meat production but with low heritability. A selection experiment for ovulation rate has been performed for 10 generations to improve litter size in rabbits. The selected line increased two ova more than the control line [...] Read more.
Litter size is an essential trait in rabbit meat production but with low heritability. A selection experiment for ovulation rate has been performed for 10 generations to improve litter size in rabbits. The selected line increased two ova more than the control line but nevertheless a negative correlation was observed with prenatal survival. A transcriptomic study was performed, using microarrays, in ovarian tissue from females belonging to the selected line and the control line. Our results showed 1357 differential expressed genes and nineteen potential biomarkers associated with prenatal mortality, which could explain differences between litter size in rabbits. Cell death was the most relevant process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Farm Animal Gene Exploration)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Patient-Derived Xenograft vs. Organoids: A Preliminary Analysis of Cancer Research Output, Funding and Human Health Impact in 2014–2019
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1923; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101923 - 20 Oct 2020
Viewed by 324
Abstract
Cancer remains a major threat to mortality and morbidity globally, despite intense research and generous funding. Patient-derived xenograft (PDX) models—where tumor biopsies are injected into an animal—were developed to improve the predictive capacity of preclinical animal models. However, recent observations have called into [...] Read more.
Cancer remains a major threat to mortality and morbidity globally, despite intense research and generous funding. Patient-derived xenograft (PDX) models—where tumor biopsies are injected into an animal—were developed to improve the predictive capacity of preclinical animal models. However, recent observations have called into question the clinical relevance, and therefore the translational accuracy, of these. Patient-derived organoids (PDO) use patient tumor samples to create in vitro models that maintain aspects of tumor structure and heterogeneity. We undertook a preliminary analysis of the number of breast, colorectal, and lung cancer research studies using PDX or PDO published worldwide between 2014–2019. We looked for evidence of impacts of this research on human health. The number of publications that focused on PDO is gradually increasing over time, but is still very low compared to publications using PDX models. Support for new research projects using PDO is gradually increasing, a promising indicator of a shift towards more human-relevant approaches to understanding human disease. Overall, increases in total funding for these three major cancer types does not appear to be translating to any consequential increase in outputs, defined for this purpose as publications associated with clinical trials. With increasing public discomfort in research using animals and demands for ‘alternative’ methods, it is timely to consider how to implement non-animal methods more effectively Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
The Effect of Beef Production System on the Health, Performance, Carcass Characteristics, and Meat Quality of Holstein Bulls
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1922; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101922 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 260
Abstract
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of production system on the health, performance, carcass characteristics, and meat quality of autumn born (AB) and spring born (SB) Holstein bulls. The study involved a total of 224 Holstein bulls and was [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of production system on the health, performance, carcass characteristics, and meat quality of autumn born (AB) and spring born (SB) Holstein bulls. The study involved a total of 224 Holstein bulls and was conducted over two years (2017/18, 2018/19). The four production system treatments differed during the grower period and consisted of: (i) grazed with no concentrate supplementation (G), (ii) grazed with 2 kg concentrate supplementation per day (G2), (iii) grazed with ad libitum access to concentrates (GA) and (iv) housed with ad libitum access to concentrates and grass silage (HA). All bulls were finished on ad libitum concentrates and grass silage and were slaughtered at a mean age of 15.5 months. Total grower dry matter intake (DMI) (p < 0.001) and total finishing DMI (p < 0.001) differed between production systems for both AB and SB bulls, with that of GA bulls being the greatest in both cases. Average daily gain (ADG) during the grower period was greatest (p < 0.001) for the HA production system in the AB bulls and the GA and HA production systems for the SB bulls. However, during the finishing period, G bulls had the greatest (p < 0.001) ADG of the AB bulls, while that of the SB bulls was from the G2 production system (p < 0.001). For both AB and SB, bulls on the GA and HA production systems produced heavier cold carcass weights than the G and G2 bulls (p < 0.001). There was no significant difference (p > 0.05) in health, carcass conformation, fat classification, or meat quality between production systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Cattle)
Open AccessArticle
High Exposure to Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora Spp. in Donkeys in Israel: Serological Survey and Case Reports
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1921; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101921 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 348
Abstract
Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora spp. are closely related cyst-forming coccidian parasites, which infect various animal species and have considerable zoonotic and economic implications, respectively. Both parasites are endemic in Israel and have been reported to infect wild and domestic animals. This study was [...] Read more.
Toxoplasma gondii and Neospora spp. are closely related cyst-forming coccidian parasites, which infect various animal species and have considerable zoonotic and economic implications, respectively. Both parasites are endemic in Israel and have been reported to infect wild and domestic animals. This study was conceived to evaluate the serologic exposure of donkeys to these parasites. Serum samples were collected from 98 donkeys. Half of them (n = 49) were from animal shelters in Israel, and the rest (n = 49) were working donkeys from the Palestinian Authority. The donkeys were screened for the presence of anti-Toxoplasma and anti-Neospora antibodies by immunofluorescence antibody tests (IFATs). The seroprevalence of T. gondii and Neospora spp. was 94% and 70%, respectively, and 69% of the donkeys were exposed to both parasites. In addition, N. caninum tissue cysts were documented in two donkeys during post-mortem examination. This is the first report of the exposure of donkeys to T. gondii and Neospora spp. in the area. The high prevalence found in this study suggests that donkeys may have a role in the maintenance of these parasites in the area, thus serving as a source of infection for the definitive hosts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Donkey and Mule Research)
Show Figures

Graphical abstract

Open AccessArticle
Traumatic Stress of Frontline Workers in Culling Livestock Animals in South Korea
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1920; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101920 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 296
Abstract
The last decade brought several devastating outbreaks of foot and mouth disease and avian influenza in South Korea, which had been handled through preventive culling, despite the controversy surrounding its efficiency and ethical considerations. Notably, the lack of regulations on culling processes has [...] Read more.
The last decade brought several devastating outbreaks of foot and mouth disease and avian influenza in South Korea, which had been handled through preventive culling, despite the controversy surrounding its efficiency and ethical considerations. Notably, the lack of regulations on culling processes has exposed the workers to extremely harsh working conditions. This study investigates the effect of culling jobs on the mental health of the frontline workers, based on 200 samples collected through a web-based survey conducted on participants with experience of culling tasks. Culling was found to have a powerful negative effect on the workers’ mental health, including high depression rates. Of those surveyed, 83.7% answered that the working conditions were intense, and 74.5% showed scores above the cutoff point for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A regression analysis revealed that individual’s attitudes toward animals mediated the effect of culling experience on PTSD symptoms. However, mental health care for the workers has been insufficient: 70.2% of the respondents were willing to get mental treatment to deal with the distress they underwent from culling. We conclude that engagement in culling has a detrimental effect on the workers’ mental health, and that they should be provided with systematic mental health care. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Human-Animal Interactions, Animal Behaviour and Emotion)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Preliminary Exploration of Swine Veterinarian Perspectives of On-Farm Euthanasia
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1919; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101919 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 313
Abstract
Euthanasia is a critical component in swine production and veterinarians play an important role in euthanasia protocol development and training. This study aimed to understand veterinarian involvement in and perspectives on euthanasia on pig farms. An online survey was disseminated both at a [...] Read more.
Euthanasia is a critical component in swine production and veterinarians play an important role in euthanasia protocol development and training. This study aimed to understand veterinarian involvement in and perspectives on euthanasia on pig farms. An online survey was disseminated both at a pig welfare conference and online via a veterinarian e-newsletter. Twenty-five veterinarians participated in the survey. The majority of respondents indicated that caretakers are the individuals making euthanasia decisions and performing the task (n = 17, 68% and 22, 88%, respectively). The majority (22, 88%) of respondents indicated that most of the facilities with which they work have a written euthanasia protocol, and 72% (18) indicated that they assisted in protocol development. Only half of respondents (13, 52%) agreed that “all employees performing euthanasia have been trained adequately”, and 80% (20) identified an interest in delivering more training. Less than half the respondents indicated that strategies for coping with “personal stress” and “emotional wellness” (12, 48%) were included in euthanasia training. While the moral stress of performing euthanasia is recognized, there is opportunity for addressing mental well-being in euthanasia resources. Although preliminary, this study supports the need for further euthanasia training on-farm, involving veterinarians in the process. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pain management in livestock species)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Animal Welfare Assessment: Can We Develop a Practical, Time-Limited Assessment Protocol for Pasture-Based Dairy Cows in New Zealand?
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1918; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101918 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 326
Abstract
Despite being a leading producer and exporter of dairy products, New Zealand has no industry-recognised welfare assessment protocol. A New Zealand-specific protocol is essential, as almost all dairy farms in New Zealand are pasture-based and housing is rarely used. Therefore, protocols developed for [...] Read more.
Despite being a leading producer and exporter of dairy products, New Zealand has no industry-recognised welfare assessment protocol. A New Zealand-specific protocol is essential, as almost all dairy farms in New Zealand are pasture-based and housing is rarely used. Therefore, protocols developed for intensive cows are not suitable. The aim of this study was to develop a simple yet practical welfare assessment protocol that could be used to assess the welfare of a dairy herd during one visit timed to occur around milking. Six welfare assessment protocols and four studies of dairy cattle welfare assessments that had some focus on dairy cattle welfare at pasture were used, along with the New Zealand Dairy Cattle Code of Welfare, to identify potential assessments for inclusion in the protocol. Eighty-four potential assessments (20 record-based and 64 that needed assessing on-farm) were identified by this process of welfare assessments. After screening to exclude on-farm assessments that were not relevant, that had only limited practical application in pasture-based dairy cows or that required more time than available, 28 on-farm assessments remained, which were put together with the 20 record-based assessments and were tested for feasibility, practicality and time on two pasture-based dairy farms. Assessments were then identified as suitable, suitable after modification or not feasible. Suitable and modified assessments were then included in the final protocol alongside additional measures specific to New Zealand dairy farms. The final protocol included 24 on-farm assessments and eight record-based assessments. Further testing of these 32 assessments is needed on more dairy farms across New Zealand before the protocol can be used to routinely assess the welfare of dairy cows in New Zealand. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Welfare)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Free-Range and Low-Protein Concentrated Diets in Iberian Pigs: Effect on Plasma Insulin and Leptin Concentration, Lipogenic Enzyme Activity, and Fatty Acid Composition of Adipose Tissue
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1917; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101917 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 228
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of diets with different protein contents on carcass traits, plasma hormone concentration, lipogenic enzyme activities, and fatty acid (FA) composition in the adipose tissue of Iberian pigs. Twenty-four castrated male Iberian pigs (eight [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of diets with different protein contents on carcass traits, plasma hormone concentration, lipogenic enzyme activities, and fatty acid (FA) composition in the adipose tissue of Iberian pigs. Twenty-four castrated male Iberian pigs (eight per feeding diet) were fed under free-range conditions with acorns and grass (FR), and in confinement with concentrated diets with standard (SP) and low-protein contents (LP) from 116.0 to 174.2 kg live weight. Backfat thickness was not affected by diet. The plasma leptin concentration was higher (p < 0.001) in the FR group than in the LP and SP groups, while insulin concentration was higher in the SP group than in the LP and FR groups. The lipogenic enzyme activities of glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, malic enzyme, and glycerol-3-phosphate dehydrogenase were lower in the FR group compared to the LP and SP pigs. The activities of these enzymes were adipose-tissue-specific. No differences were found in FA composition of adipose tissue between the SP and LP groups, while the FR pigs had lower proportions of saturated FA and higher proportions of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated FA than the SP and LP pigs. In conclusion, feeding low-protein diets in Iberian pigs does not seem to affect adipose carcass traits, strengthening previous findings that indicate that this is a good strategy to improve meat and dry-cured product quality. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Comparative Analysis of Intestinal Helminth Infections in Colic and Non-Colic Control Equine Patients
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1916; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101916 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 339
Abstract
All around the world, intestinal helminths constitute one of the most prevalent life-long occurring infections and re-infections affecting all horse age groups. A range of parasite species among strongyles, ascarids, and tapeworms is known to have the potential to cause colic in horses. [...] Read more.
All around the world, intestinal helminths constitute one of the most prevalent life-long occurring infections and re-infections affecting all horse age groups. A range of parasite species among strongyles, ascarids, and tapeworms is known to have the potential to cause colic in horses. However, there is a lack of current scientific evidence on the actual relevance of helminth infection levels in the context of colic in horses kept during prevailing epidemiological conditions. Thus, a prospective case-control study on the occurrence of intestinal helminths in a total of 620 mainly adult equine clinic patients was conducted to investigate the association between colic and helminth infection. For each horse, a range of copromicroscopic, serological, and clinical data was obtained, in addition to a questionnaire on relevant anamnestic data, including previous anthelmintic treatment and husbandry. Using a FLOTAC-based copromicroscopic diagnosis, the highest infection rates were seen for strongyles (41.8%), followed by Anoplocephala perfoliata and Parascaris spp. (both 0.8%), with no significant difference between the two study groups. Employing a real-time PCR a 1.1% S. vulgaris DNA prevalence was found. Considerably higher seroprevalences were observed using S. vulgaris and A. perfoliata ELISAs, with 32.3% and 10.7%, respectively. It was noteworthy that no association concerning either serologic status was encountered with colic status. The shedding of strongyle eggs was associated with a 1.8-times increased risk of S. vulgaris seropositivity. Recent anthelmintic treatment was associated with the onset of colic, as animals who had received an anthelmintic during the previous week had a 2.4-times higher risk of signs of colic compared to those who had been treated at least eight weeks prior. Another noteworthy observation was that ponies were significantly less often affected by colic than warmbloods. The high S. vulgaris and considerable A. perfoliata seroprevalences encountered in this investigation should prompt veterinarians, farm managers, and horse owners to maintain consequent and effective worm control measures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Equine Parasitology)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Dreaming about Dogs: An Online Survey
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1915; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101915 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 316
Abstract
Dogs have been close human companions for millennia and one would expect—according to the continuity hypothesis of dreaming—that dogs are also quite common in dreams. Previous studies showed that the percentages of dreams that include dogs range from about 1.5% to 5%, but [...] Read more.
Dogs have been close human companions for millennia and one would expect—according to the continuity hypothesis of dreaming—that dogs are also quite common in dreams. Previous studies showed that the percentages of dreams that include dogs range from about 1.5% to 5%, but studies relating waking-life experiences with dogs with dreams about dogs have not been carried out. In total, 1695 persons (960 women, 735 men) completed an online survey that included questions about dreams and waking-life experiences that included dogs. The findings indicate that dogs show up, on average, in about 5% of remembered dreams, but this percentage is much higher in the dreams of dog owners and persons with close contacts with dogs. Moreover, the active time spent with a dog and the proximity during sleep is also related to a higher percentage of dreams that include dogs. Although dreams including dogs are on average more positively toned than dreams in general, about 11% of the dog dreams included threatening dogs. Persons who had negative experiences with dogs in their waking lives reported more threatening dog dreams. The results support the continuity hypothesis and it would be very interesting to conduct content analytic studies with dream samples obtained from dog owners to learn more about the variety of interactions between dreamers and dogs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sleep Behaviour and Physiology of Domestic Dogs)
Open AccessArticle
Post-Release Monitoring of Western Grey Kangaroos (Macropus fuliginosus) Relocated from an Urban Development Site
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1914; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101914 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 892
Abstract
The expansion of urban areas and associated clearing of habitat can have severe consequences for native wildlife. One option for managing wildlife in these situations is to relocate them. While there is a general perception that relocation is humane, transparency of outcomes is [...] Read more.
The expansion of urban areas and associated clearing of habitat can have severe consequences for native wildlife. One option for managing wildlife in these situations is to relocate them. While there is a general perception that relocation is humane, transparency of outcomes is lacking. Here, we document the outcome of 122 western grey kangaroos (Macropus fuliginosus) relocated from an urban development site on the edge of Perth, Western Australia. Global Positioning System (GPS) or Very High Frequency (VHF) collars were fitted to 67 kangaroos, and their survival and movement were monitored over 12 months using telemetry, camera traps and spotlighting. Only six collared animals survived for the duration of the study with most dying within a week of the relocation, indicating stress associated with capture as the likely cause. By the completion of the study, 111 kangaroos were predicted to have died based on the proportion of individuals known to have died. Movement patterns of surviving GPS collared kangaroos changed over time from largely exploratory forays, to more repeated movements between focus areas within home ranges. The poor outcome here raises concerns around the viability of relocating a relatively large number of kangaroos as a management option. It also highlights the need for careful planning to limit the stress associated with capture and transport if relocations are to be used for managing kangaroos in urban areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Wildlife)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Growth Performance, Nutrient Digestibility, Hematological Parameters, and Hepatic Oxidative Stress Response in Juvenile Nile Tilapia, Oreochromis niloticus, Fed Carbohydrates of Different Complexities
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1913; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101913 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 321
Abstract
A 45-day feeding trial was conducted to assess the capacity of juvenile Nile tilapia (2.12 ± 0.02 g) to utilize different sources of carbohydrate in their diets. Growth performance, nutrient digestibility, hematological parameters, and hepatic oxidative stress were evaluated. Four experimental diets were [...] Read more.
A 45-day feeding trial was conducted to assess the capacity of juvenile Nile tilapia (2.12 ± 0.02 g) to utilize different sources of carbohydrate in their diets. Growth performance, nutrient digestibility, hematological parameters, and hepatic oxidative stress were evaluated. Four experimental diets were formulated to be isonitrogenous (25% crude protein) and isolipidic (10% crude lipid), each containing 20% glucose (GLU-diet), maltose (MAL-diet), dextrin (DEX-diet), and corn starch (CST-diet), respectively. At the end of feeding trial, survival in all groups was above 90% and was not significantly different among groups. The results indicated that fish fed the DEX-diet and CSTA-diet showed significantly (p < 0.05) better specific growth rate (SGR), feed conversion ratio (FCR), and protein efficiency ratio (PER) compared with those fed the other diets. The dry matter and carbohydrate digestibility were significantly higher (p < 0.05) in groups fed on dextrin and corn starch diets. However, the digestibility of crude protein and energy in diets did not differ significantly (p > 0.05) among groups fed on experimental diets. The activities of analyzed antioxidant enzymes in the liver were significantly (p < 0.01) higher in groups fed on glucose and maltose diets when compared to other groups. Hematological parameters were affected by the dietary carbohydrate sources; there was a significant increase in hematocrit (Ht), hemoglobin (Hb), and mean corpuscular volume (CMV) in the blood of fish fed on dextrin and cornstarch diets compared to other experimental diets. These results indicated that low complexity carbohydrate sources induced oxidative stress and depressed growth performance. Overall, these results indicate that dietary dextrin and starch were more efficiently utilized than glucose as an energy source by juvenile Nile tilapia. This information is of increasing interest in fish nutrition to provide healthy and economically feed formulations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feeding Research for Nutrition and Health Improvement in Fish)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Carcass Characteristics and Primal Pork Cuts of Gilts, Boars, Immunocastrates and Barrows Using AutoFOM III Data of a Commercial Abattoir
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1912; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101912 - 19 Oct 2020
Viewed by 305
Abstract
The surgical castration of male piglets as a routine procedure in modern pig production is facing increasing societal criticism. Pork production with boars and immunocastrates are available alternatives, but both have low market shares as it is so far uncertain how the carcass [...] Read more.
The surgical castration of male piglets as a routine procedure in modern pig production is facing increasing societal criticism. Pork production with boars and immunocastrates are available alternatives, but both have low market shares as it is so far uncertain how the carcass characteristics and primal pork cuts of boars and immunocastrates will be estimated in comparison to barrows and gilts. This article therefore evaluates the impact of sex group (gilts, boars, immunocastrates and barrows) on carcass characteristics and primal pork cuts using AutoFOM III data from a commercial abattoir. In our study, weekly slaughter data from a total of n = 36,994 pigs between 2018 and 2019 were analyzed. The results show that gilts had the highest amount of pork per carcass of all sex groups, whereas non-significant differences between boars, immunocastrates and barrows could be observed. Boars had the highest lean meat content, followed by gilts, immunocastrates and finally barrows with the lowest lean meat content. These results suggest that both immunocastration and pork production with boars are sustainable techniques that can replace pork production with barrows without affecting carcass quality. Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Managing Free-Range Laying Hens—Part B: Early Range Users Have More Pathology Findings at the End of Lay but Have a Significantly Higher Chance of Survival—An Indicative Study
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1911; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101911 - 18 Oct 2020
Viewed by 366
Abstract
While free-range laying hens frequently experience health and welfare challenges, the contribution of range use towards these risks are largely unknown. The aim of this pilot study was to investigate the survival, health and welfare of commercial free-range laying hens and explore the [...] Read more.
While free-range laying hens frequently experience health and welfare challenges, the contribution of range use towards these risks are largely unknown. The aim of this pilot study was to investigate the survival, health and welfare of commercial free-range laying hens and explore the association with early range use. Range use of 9375 Lohmann Brown hens housed within five flocks was assessed during 18–21 weeks of age and individual hens were classified as “rangers” (frequent range users), “roamers” (intermittent range users), and “stayers” (rare/no range users) were then subject to necropsy at 74 weeks of age. Rangers and roamers were three times and 2.4 times more likely to survive than stayers, respectively (p = 0.001). Overall, rangers had significantly better feather cover and more lesions associated with spotty liver diseases compared to roamers and stayers (p = 0.001). Similarly, rangers and roamers had a higher prevalence of A. galli infection and less frequent signs of fatty liver syndrome compared to stayers. Rangers had a higher proportion of hens with full ovary follicle production compared to stayers and roamers (p = 0.035). This information is highly relevant to consider the targeted support of different flock subpopulations to improve hen health and welfare, directly affecting farm profitability. Further research on other farms is warranted to investigate the transferability of the observed results. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrition and Management of Egg-Laying Poultry)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessReview
Current Trends in Understanding and Managing Equine Rhodococcosis
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1910; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101910 - 18 Oct 2020
Viewed by 343
Abstract
The aim of this review was to summarize studies on equine rhodococcosis over the last decade. For many years Rhodococcus equi has remained one of the major health challenges in the equine breeding industry worldwide. Recently, many novel approaches and ideas have been [...] Read more.
The aim of this review was to summarize studies on equine rhodococcosis over the last decade. For many years Rhodococcus equi has remained one of the major health challenges in the equine breeding industry worldwide. Recently, many novel approaches and ideas have been described and some of them were initially implemented into the clinical practice. This study reviews a variety of new information about neonatal susceptibility, clinical appearance, considered and applied diagnostic procedures and treatment alternatives, factors limiting accurate prognosis, ideas regarding environmental management and prophylaxis considerations. Although multiple research were conducted, the main problems such as high morbidity and mortality, a lack of reliable prevention strategies and treatment limitations are still unresolved and require further scientific effort. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Equids)
Open AccessArticle
Yellow Mealworm Inclusion in Diets for Heavy-Size Broiler Chickens: Implications for Intestinal Microbiota and Mucin Dynamics
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1909; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101909 - 18 Oct 2020
Viewed by 311
Abstract
In the present trial, 160 heavy-size male broiler chickens were allocated to 4 dietary treatments (control feed [C] and 5, 10 and 15% TM meal inclusion, respectively, with 5 replicate pens/treatment and 8 birds/pen) to evaluate the influence of TM meal on intestinal [...] Read more.
In the present trial, 160 heavy-size male broiler chickens were allocated to 4 dietary treatments (control feed [C] and 5, 10 and 15% TM meal inclusion, respectively, with 5 replicate pens/treatment and 8 birds/pen) to evaluate the influence of TM meal on intestinal microbiota and mucin composition. The broiler chickens fed TM-based diets showed higher beta diversity of their cecal microbiota in comparison with the C birds (p < 0.001). A significant decrease of the relative abundance of Firmicutes phylum and lower Firmicutes:Bacteroidetes ratios (False Discovery Rate [FDR] < 0.05) were also identified in TM15 broiler chickens when compared to the C group. Furthermore, the TM birds showed decreased relative abundance of Clostridium, Coprococcus, L-Ruminococcus and Ruminococcus genera (FDR < 0.05). In relation to the gut mucin composition, higher mucin staining intensity was detected in the intestinal crypts of TM5 birds in comparison with the other TM groups (p < 0.05). In conclusion, dietary TM meal inclusion negatively influenced the cecal microbiota of heavy-size broiler chickens in terms of partial alteration of the physiological microbial population and reduction of the potential beneficial bacteria (with slightly more pronounced effects when testing the 10–15% inclusion levels). Full article
Show Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessReview
Strategies for Feeding Unweaned Dairy Beef Cattle to Improve Their Health
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1908; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101908 - 18 Oct 2020
Viewed by 269
Abstract
In order to answer the question of whether nutritional interventions may help to reduce the incidence of respiratory disease in dairy beef calves at arrival, the present review is divided in three sections. In the first section, the nutrition of calves previous to [...] Read more.
In order to answer the question of whether nutritional interventions may help to reduce the incidence of respiratory disease in dairy beef calves at arrival, the present review is divided in three sections. In the first section, the nutrition of calves previous to the arrival from the origin farm to the final rearing farm is reviewed. In the second section, the possible consequences of this previous nutrition on gut health and immune status upon arrival to the rearing farm are described. The main consequences of previous nutrition and management that these unweaned calves suffer at arrival are the negative energy balance, the increased intestinal permeability, the oxidative stress, the anemia, and the recovery feed consumption. Finally, in the third section, some considerations to advance in future nutritional strategies are suggested, which are focused on the prevention of the negative consequences of previous nutrition and the recovery of the gut and immune status. Moreover, additional suggestions are formulated that will be also helpful to reduce the incidence of bovine respiratory disease (BRD) that are not directly linked to nutrition like having a control golden standard in the studies or designing risk categories in order to classify calves as suitable or not to be transported. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feeding Cattle for Health Improvement)
Show Figures

Figure 1

Previous Issue
Next Issue
Back to TopTop