Probiotics-fermented Massa Medicata Fermentata ameliorates weaning stress in piglets related to improving intestinal homeostasis
Weaning stress has serious negative effects on piglets’ health and the swine industry. Probiotics-fermented Chinese herbal medicines are potential feed additives to ameliorate weaning stress. In this study, the effects of probiotics-fermented Massa Medicata Fermentata (MMFP) on intestinal homeostasis were evaluated in weaning piglets. Dietary supplementation with MMFP promoted the development of the intestinal structure and elevated the concentrations of lactic acid and short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) in the intestinal contents and antioxidant capacities in serum. MMFP reduced the levels of inflammatory factors in the intestinal mucosa. Microbial community analysis demonstrated that MMFP led to the selective and progressive enrichment of lactic acid- and SCFA-producing bacteria along the gastrointestinal tract, in particular, OTUs corresponding to Lactobacillus, Streptococcus, Acetitomaculum, Roseburia, and Eubacterium xylanophilum group, while MMFP reduced the relative abundance of pathogenic bacteria. On the contrary, antibiotics had negative effects on intestinal histology and increased the relative abundance of pro-inflammatory bacterium, such as Marvinbryantia, Peptococcus, Turicibacter, and Blautia. Correlation analysis reflected that the bacteria enriched in MMFP group were positively correlated with enhanced intestinal homeostasis, which suggested that dietary supplementation with MMFP enhanced host intestinal homeostasis by modulating the composition of gut microbiota and the levels of beneficial SCFAs, thus ameliorating weaning stress in piglets.
KeywordsWeaning stress Probiotics-fermented Massa Medicata Fermentata Microbial community Intestinal homeostasis SCFAs
This study was funded by Jilin Province Science and Technology Institute of China (No. 20180201078YY) and Jilin Province Development and Reform Commission of China (No. 2015Y051).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
The animal experiment was approved by the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee of Jilin University (IACUC). All applicable international, national, and/or institutional guidelines for the care and use of animals were followed. This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.
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