Dietary Fatty Acid Increases Body Weight Gain without a Change in Rumen Fermentation in Fattening Cattle

  • Kita, K. (Laboratory of Grassland Science, University Farm, Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University) ;
  • Oka, M. (Laboratory of Grassland Science, University Farm, Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University) ;
  • Yokota, H. (Laboratory of Grassland Science, University Farm, Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University)
  • Received : 2002.07.24
  • Accepted : 2002.10.07
  • Published : 2003.01.01


Dietary fatty acid including mainly palmitic acid and stearic acid was fed to fattening cattle and its effect on body weight gain, plasma lipid contents and rumen liquid fermentation in vitro was examined. In expt. 1, the effect of dietary fatty acid on body weight gain and plasma lipid concentrations was examined. In the control diet group, cattle were fed 1 kg/day of rice straw and concentrate which satisfied the requirement. In the fatty acid group, cattle were given 250 g/d of fatty acid with the same diet of the control diet group. In the excess concentrate group, cattle were given the same diet of the control diet group plus 735 g/d of concentrate corresponding to the same TDN of 250 g/d of fatty acid. Diets were given for 7 days. Body weight gain of cattle given dietary fatty acid was significantly greater than that of cattle fed only rice straw and concentrate. When dietary fatty acid was added to cattle feed, plasma NEFA and HDL-cholesterol concentrations increased. In expt. 2, the influence of dietary fatty acid on gas production and VFA profile in the rumen liquid was investigated in vitro. In the control group, 10 mg of rice straw and 90 mg of concentrate were incubated in the rumen fluid. In the excess concentrate group, 10 mg of rice straw and 97.5 mg of concentrate were incubated. In the fatty acid group, 10 mg of rice straw, 90 mg of concentrate and 2.5 mg of fatty acids were incubated. The rumen liquid mixed with feed materials was incubated for 24 h and the cumulative gas volume was measured. The VFA profile was also measured. Cumulative gas volume in the rumen liquid with fatty acid was equal to the control. Excess concentrate increased cumulative gas volume compared to the fatty acid group. There was no significant difference in total VFA concentration between experimental diet groups. It is suggested that dietary fatty acid has the potency to improve growth performance in fattening cattle without failure in rumen fermentation.


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