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J Anim Sci. 2014 Apr;92(4):1548-61. doi: 10.2527/jas.2013-6322. Epub 2014 Mar 18.

Evaluation of standardized ileal digestible valine:lysine, total lysine:crude protein, and replacing fish meal, meat and bone meal, and poultry byproduct meal with crystalline amino acids on growth performance of nursery pigs from seven to twelve kilograms.

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  • 1Department of Animal Sciences and Industry, College of Agriculture.


Five experiments were conducted to evaluate replacing fish meal, meat and bone meal, and poultry byproduct meal with crystalline AA for 7- to 12-kg pigs. In all experiments, pigs (PIC TR4 × 1050) were fed a common diet for 3 d postweaning, treatment diets for 14 d (d 0 to 14), and, again, a common diet for 14 d (d 14 to 28). Treatment diets were corn-soybean meal based and formulated to contain 1.30% standardized ileal digestible (SID) Lys. Experiment 1 evaluated replacing dietary fish meal with crystalline AA. For the 6 treatments, crystalline Lys, Met, Thr, Trp, Ile, Val, Gln, and Gly all increased to maintain minimum AA ratios as fish meal decreased (4.50, 3.60, 2.70, 1.80, and 0.90 to 0.00%). There was no difference in ADG, ADFI, or G:F among treatments, validating a low-CP, AA-fortified diet for subsequent experiments. Experiment 2 evaluated deleting crystalline AA from a low-CP, AA-fortified diet with 6 treatments: 1) a positive control similar to the diet validated in Exp. 1, 2) positive control with l-Ile deleted, 3) positive control with l-Trp deleted, 4) positive control with l-Val deleted, 5) positive control with l-Gln and l-Gly deleted, and 6) positive control with l-Ile, l-Trp, l-Val, l-Gln, and l-Gly deleted (NC). Pigs fed the positive control or Ile deleted diet had improved (P < 0.05) ADG and ADFI during d 0 to 14 compared with pigs fed diets with l-Trp or l-Val deleted or NC. Experiment 3 evaluated 6 treatments with total Lys:CP of 6.79, 6.92, 7.06, 7.20, 7.35, and 7.51%. Fish meal was adjusted as a source of dispensable N to achieve the target Lys:CP. There were no differences in growth performance among pigs fed different Lys:CP diets. Experiment 4 evaluated increasing SID Val:Lys with Val at 57.4, 59.9, 62.3, 64.7, 67.2, and 69.6% of Lys. Average daily gain and ADFI increased (quadratic, P < 0.01) and G:F improved (linear, P = 0.02) during d 0 to 14 as Val:Lys increased from 57.4 to 64.7%. Experiment 5 was a 2 × 3 factorial arrangement of treatments with main effects of low or high level of crystalline AA and 3 animal protein sources (fish meal, meat and bone meal, or poultry byproduct meal). Low- and high-crystalline AA diets contained 4.5 or 1% fish meal, 6 or 1.2% meat and bone meal, and 6 or 1% poultry byproduct meal, respectively. No AA × protein source interactions were observed. From d 0 to 14, no differences in growth performance among protein sources was found, whereas increasing crystalline AA improved (P = 0.04) ADG. In conclusion, crystalline AA can replace fish meal, meat and bone meal, and poultry byproduct meal when balanced for SID AA ratios of Met and Cys:Lys (58%), Thr:Lys (62%), Trp:Lys (16.5%), Val:Lys (65%), and Ile:Lys (52%).

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