Acta Vet. Brno 2010, 79: 519-524

The Effect of Probiotics on the Morphological Characteristics of the Small Intestinal Mucosa

Anna Rekiel1, Wojciech Bielecki2, Justyna Więcek1

1Department of Animal Breeding, Faculty of Animal Science, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Poland
2Department of Pathology and Veterinary Diagnostics, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, Poland

The objective of this study was to determine the impact of antibiotics and selected probiotics on the morphological properties of the small intestinal mucosa in growing-finishing pigs. Two production experiments were conducted on 32 hybrid fatteners (16 pigs per experiment, of 8 gilts and young hogs each, at a 1:1 ratio) fed complete diets in a 2-phase system. The animals were clinically healthy and had been treated for parasites prior to fattening. In the first experiment, diets were supplemented with the antibiotic flavomycin (group C1) and the probiotic ToyoCerin (Bacillus toyoi strain) (group E1) at the amount of 0.1%, and in the second experiment with flavomycin (C2) and Bactocell (Pedicoccus acidilactici, MA18/5M strain) (E2) at the amount of 0.01%. A histological analysis of small intestinal epithelial sections was performed using bax, bcl-x, bcl-2 polyclonal antibodies and Ki-67 and PCNA monoclonal antibodies. Sections of the duodenum, jejunum and ileum were prepared post mortem. Haematoxylin and eosin H-E, histochemical (PAS-Alcian Blue) and immunohistochemical staining procedures were applied. The results of histological, histochemical and immunohistochemical examinations of the small intestinal mucosa indicated that feed additives and probiotics had a varied effect on the morphological characteristics and the proliferation capacity of crypt epithelium. Enterocyte proliferation in crypt epithelium decreased after the administration of probiotics. The absence of significant differences between groups (C1-E1; C2-E2) may suggest that probiotics have no adverse effect on mucosal epithelial cells. Nevertheless, given the importance of this topic and the development of the use of feed additives, follow up research in this area is needed.


19 live references