Image 1: Feeding of soy protein concentrate (SPC) without zinc oxide, resulting in an underdeveloped gut with short villi. In image 2 the SPC and 2.500 ppm zinc oxide have increased the villi’s length. The villi are loosely packed and the bloodstream unprotected against invading pathogens. The piglet in image 3 is fed with SPC and fermented rapeseed without zinc oxide. As you can see, the villi are long, and the junctions are closely connected. As a result, the piglet is much better guarded against pathogenic bacteria migrating into the bloodstream.
Diagrammes: Shows intraepithelial and stromal lymphocyte infiltration in small intestine and colon in the three treatment groups: SPC (basal group) without Zinc Oxide, the Zinc group with SPC + 2,500 ppm Zinc Oxide and the EP100i group with SPC + 10% fermented rapeseed (EP100i) without Zinc Oxide. Lymphocytes are immune cells circulating in the blood to fight and destroy invading bacterial and viral pathogens. The more lymphocytes, the higher the degree of inflammation. Enterocytes ensure nutrient absorption in the piglet gut and should be present in large numbers.
Diagrammes 1 and 2 show increased infiltration of intraepithelial lymphocytes in the basal (SPC GREY bar) and zinc group (SPC+2500 ppm ZnO GREEN Bar) indicating sub-clinical inflammation with moderate to severe damage to the intestinal epithelial barrier. Piglets fed fermented rapeseed (EP100i) had a significantly lower degree of inflammation than the diets containing soy protein concentrate with and without Zinc Oxide.
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