Influence of Rumen Escape Starch on α-Amylase Activity in Pancreatic Tissue and Small Intestinal Digesta of Lambs

  • Xu, M. (College of Animal Science and Technology, Northwest A&F University) ;
  • Yao, J.H. (College of Animal Science and Technology, Northwest A&F University) ;
  • Wang, Y.H. (College of Animal Science and Technology, Northwest A&F University) ;
  • Wang, F.N. (College of Animal Science and Technology, Northwest A&F University)
  • Received : 2006.02.05
  • Accepted : 2006.05.02
  • Published : 2005.12.01


Two slaughter experiments were conducted to determine the effects of rumen escape starch, by altering dietary starch concentration and corn particle size, on ${\alpha}$-amylase activity in the pancreas and the small intestinal digesta of lambs. In experiment 1, 18 wether lambs (28.5${\pm}$1.6 kg) were fed low, medium or high starch diets for 35 d and slaughtered. Dietary starch concentrations linearly increased rumen escape starch (p<0.05). Pancreatic ${\alpha}$-amylase activity was lower (p<0.05) in lambs fed the low starch diet. When expressed per gram of digesta, ${\alpha}$-amylase activity was lower in lambs fed the low starch diet. However, expressed as total activity, ${\alpha}$-amylase in the digesta was greater in lambs fed the medium starch diet. In experiment 2, 12 wether lambs (23.5${\pm}$0.3 kg) were fed diets with finely cracked corn, coarsely cracked corn and whole corn. These dietary treatments continued for 35 d before tissue collection. Rumen escape starch increased with increasing corn particle size (p<0.05). ${\alpha}$-amylase activity in the pancreas and the small intestinal digesta was significantly greater (p<0.05) in lambs fed the coarsely cracked corn. These data suggest that increasing rumen escape starch results in a quadratic increase in total ${\alpha}$-amylase activity in the pancreas and the small intestinal digesta. Maximum ${\alpha}$-amylase activity is reached when rumen escape starch is about 100-120 g/d in 25-30 kg lambs.




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