Just released in Porcine Health Management

Is a new generation of mycotoxin clay adsorbents safe in a pig’s diet?

by Pavel Horky, Pavel Nevrkla, Tomas Kopec, Iqra Bano, Misa Skoric, Jiri Skladanka, Sylvie Skalickova

Abstract

Background

Bentonites, as a clay mineral, serve in pig farms as adsorbents of toxic substances. They are mainly used to reduce the negative impact of mycotoxins to maintain the performance and health status of animals. The new genotypes of pigs are highly sensitive to a range of antinutrients, including mycotoxins. Currently, attention is focused on more effective adsorbents of mycotoxins with a higher adsorption capacity. Such materials are in great demand among feed manufacturers. However, there is a concern that these new materials may also adsorb too many essential nutrients and decrease animal performance. The aim of the experiment was to evaluate the effect of the new generation of purified bentonites on the efficiency and health status of the pigs.

Results

Forty-eight slaughtered pigs with an average weight of 31.2 ± 2.6 kg were included in the experiment. The pigs were divided into two groups (2 × 24 pigs). Pigs were slaughtered at an average weight of 66.3 ± 5.2. The first group had a diet without clay (control—C). The second group (treatment—T) was fed a diet with a clay additive (purified bentonite) of 1.5 kg/t. Animals were fed the experimental diet for 35 days. In group T, a higher daily weight gain (by 4.8%) and feed intake (by 2.9%) was observed while the feed conversion decreased by 1.9%. There were no significant differences between the groups of pigs during observation in the evaluation of hematological, biochemical parameters of the blood. Morpho-pathological analysis of the jejunum showed similar signs of moderate lymphoplasmacytic infiltrate in the mucosa in the groups C and T, contained similar number of goblet cells.

Click here

to continue reading

Utility model

New invention has been entered in the register of utility models of the Czech republic

Inventors: Addicoo group s.r.o., Sylvie Skalickova and Pavel Horky

abstract art circle clockwork
nanoparticles for target delivery to intestines

The outcome introduces a novel utility model, which details the formulation of pH-responsive nanocapsules. These nanocapsules are designed to enable targeted delivery of bioactive compounds to the intestines. The output is an integral part of a larger research project, funded by the Technology Agency of the Czech Republic under the grant number TJ02000325. The project aims to develop nanotransporters for the delivery of monoglycerides, with the ultimate goal of enhancing gut microbiota diversity.

Click here

to learn more about our R&D

Just released in Journal of Animal Science and Biotechnology

Toxicological effects of nanoselenium in animals

by Iqra Bano, Sylvie Skalickova, Safia Arbab, Lenka Urbankova, Pavel Horky

Abstract

The productivity and sustainability of livestock production systems are heavily influenced by animal nutrition. To maintain homeostatic balance in the body of the animal at different phases of life, the percentage of organically active minerals in livestock feed must be optimized. Selenium (Se) is a crucial trace mineral that is required for the maintenance of many functions of the body. Se nanoparticles (SeNPs) attracted considerable interest from researchers for a variety of applications a decade ago, owing to their extraordinary properties. SeNPs offer significant advantages over larger-sized materials, by having a comparatively wider surface area, increased surface energy, and high volume. Despite its benefits, SeNP also has toxic effects, therefore safety concerns must be taken for a successful application. The toxicological effects of SeNPs in animals are characterized by weight loss, and increased mortality rate. A safe-by-strategy to certify animal, human and environmental safety will contribute to an early diagnosis of all risks associated with SeNPs. This review is aimed at describing the beneficial uses and potential toxicity of SeNPs in various animals. It will also serve as a summary of different levels of SeNPs which should be added in the feed of animals for better performance.

Click here

to continue reading

Just released in Journal of Equine Veterinary Science

Effect of Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum) Seed Cakes by Horses Subjected to Physical Exertion

by Hana Dockalova, Daria Baholet, Andrej Batik, Ladislav Zeman, Pavel Horky

Abstract

Milk thistle (Silybum marianum) provides several possible benefits for horses, namely anti–inflammatory, antioxidant effects, hepatoprotective, and neuroprotective effects. Silybin exerts also pronounced effects on energy metabolism, that could be useful for sport horses. The aim of this study is to evaluate the effect of milk thistle seed cakes (in the form of a granulated mixture with barley) on blood biochemical parameters (total protein, albumin, bilirubin, urea, creatinine, ALT, AST, ALP, GGT, LDH, the total cholesterol, HDL-cholesterol, LDL-cholesterol, TAG, BHB, NEFA, creatine kinase, lactate, glucose, glutathione peroxidase, total antioxidant capacity, cortisol, calcium, and phosphorus) to monitor the differences between the experimental (milk thistle in feed) and control horses after exposure of the monitored horses to heavy physical exercise (combined driving) total number of horses was 12 Czech Warmblood breed horses. The digestibility of silymarin (and its individual flavonolignans) and basic nutrients are also monitored in this study. Statistically significant differences (P < .05) were found mainly in plasma cortisol and NEFA levels. The results of this study confirmed the results of our previous studies. These results suggest that the feeding of milk thistle seed cakes has a possible positive effect on horse health and energy metabolism.

Click here

to continue reading

Just released in Frontiers in Veterinary Science

Importance of Zinc Nanoparticles for the Intestinal Microbiome of Weaned Piglets

by Daria Baholet, Sylvie Skalickova, Andrej Batik, Svetlana Malyugina, Jiri Skladanka and Pavel Horky

Abstract

The scientific community is closely monitoring the replacement of antibiotics with doses of ZnO in weaned piglets. Since 2022, the use of zinc in medical doses has been banned in the European Union. Therefore, pig farmers are looking for other solutions. Some studies have suggested that zinc nanoparticles might replace ZnO for the prevention of diarrhea in weaning piglets. Like ZnO, zinc nanoparticles are effective against pathogenic microorganisms, e.g., Enterobacteriaceae family in vitro and in vivo. However, the effect on probiotic Lactobacillaceae appears to differ for ZnO and zinc nanoparticles. While ZnO increases their numbers, zinc nanoparticles act in the opposite way. These phenomena have been also confirmed by in vitro studies that reported a strong antimicrobial effect of zinc nanoparticles against Lactobacillales order. Contradictory evidence makes this topic still controversial, however. In addition, zinc nanoparticles vary in their morphology and properties based on the method of their synthesis. This makes it difficult to understand the effect of zinc nanoparticles on the intestinal microbiome. This review is aimed at clarifying many circumstances that may affect the action of nanoparticles on the weaning piglets’ microbiome, including a comprehensive overview of the zinc nanoparticles in vitro effects on bacterial species occurring in the digestive tract of weaned piglets.

Click here

to continue reading

Just released in Livestock Science

Short-term supplementation of zinc nanoparticles in weaned piglets affects zinc bioaccumulation and carcass classification

by Daria Baholet, Sylvie Skalickova, Eva Weisbauerova, Andrej Batik, Ivana Kolackova, Pavel Nevrkla, Pavel Horky

Abstract

High doses of zinc have been used as a prevention against weaned piglets’ diarrhea for many years. Nevertheless, since 2022 high doses of zinc oxide have been banned in EU. Currently, there are several studies about the potential of zinc nanoparticles in lower doses which could maintain a preventive effect. Several concerns about nanoparticles’ toxicity and bioaccumulation have been raised in many other fields of research. The aim of this short follow-up study is focused on the impact of zinc nanoparticles used as a prevention of diarrhea for weaned piglets, on the classification of slaughtered pigs’ carcasses and on zinc retention in muscle tissue. Seventy piglets (10 groups of 7 piglets) were fed a standard diet. The treated groups’ diets were supplemented with zinc oxide (ZnO), and phosphate-based nanoparticles: spherical- shaped type A (ZnA) and irregular-shaped: type C (ZnC), at the doses of 500, 1000 and 2000 mg Zn equivalent per kilogram of diet. The control group´s diet was not treated with zinc in any form. The feed experiment started when the piglets were 28 days old and lasted for 10 days. Experimental animals were grown to the final weight 120 ± 10 kg and slaughtered in a slaughterhouse. The pig carcasses were evaluated according to S/EUROP standards: the pigs’ weight, back fat thickness and lean meat content were monitored. Moreover, zinc concentrations in M. longissimus dorsi et thoracis were analyzed. The results have not proved significant changes in S/EUROP standard classification and zinc bioaccumulation in muscle tissue. This follow-up experiment was carried out as part of maintaining a precautionary approach to the use the nanoparticles in piglet fattening. In our study we did not confirm their effect on the assessment of carcass classification and their bioaccumulation in muscle tissue.

Click here

to continue reading

Just released in Frontiers in Nutrition

Effect of Lactic Fermentation and Cooking on Nutrient and Mineral Digestibility of Peas

by Sylvie Skalickova, Andrea Ridoskova, Petr Slama, Jiri Skladanka, Petr Skarpa, Iva Smykalova, Jiri Horacek, Radmila Dostalova, Pavel Horky

Abstract

Peas are prospectively beneficial legumes in the human diet, and especially in a vegan and vegetarian diet, due to their high content of proteins and starch. Their frequent lack of appeal in human nutrition can be caused by their bloating effect and the content of some antinutritional compounds inhibiting the absorption of important nutrients. This study brings a comprehensive comparison of the nutrient content of pea flour after cooking and lactic fermentation before and after digestion in vitro. As a control sample, raw pea flour was used (sample 1). Raw pea flour was cooked for 10 min (sample 2) and 120 min (sample 3) at 100°C or it was fermented by Lactobacillus plantarum (sample 4) and cooked for 10 min at 100°C (sample 5). The samples were analyzed for protein and amino acids content, maltose, glucose, raffinose, total polyphenols, phytic acid, phytase, and mineral composition (P, Mg, Mn, Fe, Cu, Zn) before and after in vitro digestion. The results showed a significant (p < 0.05) increase in the protein digestibility of samples 3, 4 and 5. In the fermented samples were observed a higher concentration of Cys, Met, and Gln when compared to non-fermented samples. The fermentation of pea flour resulted in a significant (p < 0.05) decrease in glucose, maltose, and raffinose content. Cooking of pea flour for 10 and 120 min, but not fermenting, significantly (p < 0.05) decreased the polyphenols content. Cooking and fermentation together did not affect phytic acid concentration and phytase activity. Mg, Mn, Fe, Cu and, Zn concentration in pea flour was significantly (p < 0.05) decreased by cooking. On the other hand, fermentation significantly (p<0.05) improved the bioaccessibility of Mn and Fe. These findings suggest that lactic fermentation of pea flour is a promising culinary preparation that can improve the digestibility of peas.

Click here

to continue reading

Just released in Agriculture

Does Digestate Dose Affect Fodder Security and Nutritive Value?

by Ivana Kolackova, Barbora Smolkova, Oldrich Latal, Sylvie Skalickova, Jiri Skladanka, Pavel Horky, Pavel Knot, Tereza Hammerschmiedt, Antonin Kintl, Jiri Holatko, Jan Pozdisek, Martin Brtnicky

Abstract

With the rising interest in digestate use as a fertilizer on permanent cultures, there is a need to examine its effects on food and feed quality. This study is focused on the use of digestate in grassland fertilization and its effects on nutritive value parameters such as mycotoxin contamination (deoxynivalenol, aflatoxin, and T-2 toxin) and nutrient content (crude protein, crude fat, crude fiber, ash, nitrogen-free extract, digestibility of organic matter, acid detergent fiber, and ash-free neutral detergent fiber). The experiment was carried out in the Czech Republic, and the effects of fertilization regime, year, and harvest date (summer and fall cuts) on nutritive value were observed. An effect of the year on DON, AFB1, and T-2 contamination levels was observed. An effect of the harvest or fertilization regime on mycotoxin contamination was not observed. Significant differences were observed in the content of all nutrients, except ash, depending on the year. Differences were found only in the case of ADF levels, depending on the harvest date, as well; however, no differences were found between fertilization regimes. Our findings suggest that digestate does not negatively affect fodder in terms of nutritive value nor safety.

Click here

to continue reading

Just released in Animals

Influence of Milk Thistle (Silybum marianum) Seed Cakes on Biochemical Values of Equine Plasma Subjected to Physical Exertion

by Hana Dockalova, Ladislav Zeman, Pavel Horky

Abstract

Veterinarians can recommend milk thistle for the treatment of equine liver disease and laminitis. Milk thistle seed cakes were fed in the range of normal feed doses in this study. The milk thistle seed cakes were fed (twice a day) to the experimental group of the horses (n = 5) and biochemical blood markers (TP, Albumin, ALT (alanine transaminase), AST (aspartate transaminase), ALP (alkaline phosphatase), GGT (gamma-glutamyltransferase), Bilirubin, Cholesterol, HDL (high-density lipoprotein), LDL (low-density lipoprotein), TAG (triacylglycerol), BHB (beta-hydroxybutyric acid), NEFA (non-esterified fatty acids), creatine kinase, creatinine, Urea, GSH-Px (glutathione peroxidase), TAS (total antioxidant status), lactate, glucose, cortisol, Ca, Pi) were monitored. The control group of horses (n = 5), bred and trained in the same conditions, was used for comparison. The control group received the entire feed dose as accepted by the horses in the experimental group before the beginning of the experiment. The aim was to find out whether the preparation of milk thistle seed cakes could have positive effects on the health of the horses. All ten horses received one feeding form before the beginning of the experimental monitoring. All horses were exposed to heavy physical exercise (regular combined driving training) after 56 days of milk thistle seed cakes feeding (up to 400 g/day). Three blood samples were taken (before physical exercise; about 15 min and 60 min after physical exercise). Significant differences (p < 0.05) were detected in the values of AST, NEFA, cortisol and Pi in the experimental group. The exercise effect was detected in the values of albumin, lactate, cortisol, NEFA, and calcium. Our results suggest that the feeding of milk thistle seed cakes could have a positive effect on the health of the horses.

Click here

to continue reading

Just Released in Plos ONE

Protective effect of a new generation of activated and purified bentonite in combination with yeast and phytogenic substances on mycotoxin challenge in pigs

by Pavel Horky, Hana Abigail Gruberova, Tereza Aulichova, Svetlana Malyugina, Petr Slama, Ales Pavlik, Jiri Skladanka, Misa Skoric, Sylvie Skalickova

Abstract

The study aimed to investigate the efficacy of new mycotoxin adsorbents based on purified and activated bentonites combined with yeast and phytogenic compounds in fattening pigs. The experiment involved 96 pigs (31.2±2.4 kg). Control (C) group was fed a diet naturally contaminated with mycotoxins (5 mg/kg deoxynivalenol, DON) without an adsorbent. Treated groups received the feed with mycotoxin adsorbents: purified and activated bentonite (T1), purified and activated bentonite, yeast derivatives, phytogenic substances (T2), and purified, activated, and sulphurated bentonite with phytogenic substances (T3). Evaluated parameters involved growth performance, organ weight, small intestine and liver histopathology, complete blood count, serum biochemistry, antioxidant status of the organism and total and free DON content in urine. In all treated groups, an significant increase in intestinal GSH and GSH/GSSG ratio was observed when compared to C. No significant effects on liver and kidney weight, complete blood count, serum or intestinal malondialdehyde concentration, or total/free DON content in urine were observed. All adsorbents improved histopathological findings in the liver when compared to C. Moreover, T1, and T2 groups showed no presence of inflammatory reaction or necrotic changes in the livers. Although, mycotoxin adsorbents investigated in this study had no significant impact on pig growth performance, they reduced the oxidative stress, and on the tissue level they protected the jejunal tissue and liver parenchyma under deoxynivalenol challenge.

Click here

to continue reading