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Open AccessArticle

A Single Dose of Synbiotics and Vitamins at Birth Affects Piglet Microbiota before Weaning and Modifies Post-Weaning Performance

Agroscope, Tioleyre 4, 1725 Posieux, Switzerland
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2021, 11(1), 84; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11010084
Received: 16 October 2020 / Revised: 23 December 2020 / Accepted: 23 December 2020 / Published: 5 January 2021
For pig producers, enhancing piglet performance and reinforcing their health is crucial to ensure the optimal development and welfare of the animals, and to reduce the use of antimicrobials. This study investigated the effect of a single-dose application of a supplement on piglet growth and health, and on their microbiota in the suckling period and after weaning. At birth, piglets from eight litters received a supplement containing two probiotic strains, prebiotics, vitamins, and immunoglobulins, while piglets from six other litters received a dose of water. The supplement given at birth improved post-weaning piglet growth and reduced post-weaning diarrhea. These better post-weaning performances seem to be related to slight changes in the microbiota in the suckling period but not in the post-weaning period. In the suckling period, supplemented piglets shared some growth-related taxa, such as bacteria from the Lactobacillus genus, that unsupplemented piglets did not share. The present study highlights the importance of early-life microbial colonization on the subsequent performance and health of piglets.
Early-life microbial colonization is an important driver for the development and maturation of the gut. The present study aimed to determine whether a single-dose supplement given only at birth would improve piglet performance and modify their fecal microbiota during the suckling and post-weaning periods. At birth, piglets from eight litters received a supplement (SUP+) while piglets from six other litters received water (SUP−). All piglets were monitored until two weeks post-weaning, and fecal samples were collected on Day 16 of age and two weeks post-weaning (Day 39 ± 1). The supplementation resulted in an improvement of average daily gain during the whole experimental period, mainly due to a better growth and a reduction in the incidence of diarrhea in the post-weaning period. There were no differences in the abundance and diversity of the main taxa, although the supplementation increased the relative abundance of rare taxa, such as bacteria from the Saccharibacteria and Cyanobacteria phyla, and the Lentisphaeria class in the suckling period. In addition, at 16 days of age, SUP+ piglets had a more diverse core microbiota, with bacteria from the Lactobacillus genus being present in the core microbiota of SUP+ piglets and absent from SUP− piglets. Therefore, the enhanced growth performance and reduction in diarrhea seem to be related to changes in fecal microbiota during the suckling period rather than at two weeks post-weaning. View Full-Text
Keywords: piglet microbiota; probiotics; vitamins; prebiotic; post-weaning performance piglet microbiota; probiotics; vitamins; prebiotic; post-weaning performance
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MDPI and ACS Style

Girard, M.; Tretola, M.; Bee, G. A Single Dose of Synbiotics and Vitamins at Birth Affects Piglet Microbiota before Weaning and Modifies Post-Weaning Performance. Animals 2021, 11, 84. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11010084

AMA Style

Girard M, Tretola M, Bee G. A Single Dose of Synbiotics and Vitamins at Birth Affects Piglet Microbiota before Weaning and Modifies Post-Weaning Performance. Animals. 2021; 11(1):84. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11010084

Chicago/Turabian Style

Girard, Marion; Tretola, Marco; Bee, Giuseppe. 2021. "A Single Dose of Synbiotics and Vitamins at Birth Affects Piglet Microbiota before Weaning and Modifies Post-Weaning Performance" Animals 11, no. 1: 84. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11010084

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