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Keywords:

  • Animal performance;
  • Biological control;
  • Feed grain;
  • Mode of action;
  • Yeast

Abstract

BACKGROUND

The disastrous problem of animal feed contamination by mycotoxigenic fungi continues to challenge researchers and health overseers worldwide. With the aim of preventing Aspergillus flavus growth in vitro and in corn feed, the yeast Pichia anomala was examined as a biocontrol agent.

RESULTS

The yeast strain could efficiently prohibit the growth of A. flavus. P. anomala was able to produce exo-chitinase and β-1,3-glucanase which could be suggested as a mode of action for its antifungal activity. Scanning electron microscopy of cultured P. anomala with fungal hypha revealed that A. flavus was colonised by the biocontrol yeast which subsequently led to complete hyphal lysis and deterioration. The supplementation with of P. anomala cells, as a protein source, led to an obvious increase in animals' weight gain and protein content in feed grain. Moreover, after consumption of P. anomala-supplemented feed, there was a remarkable decrease in the mortality rate among fed animals.

CONCLUSION

P. anomala could be strongly recommended as a biocontrol agent against A. flavus which contaminates animal feed. Furthermore, the application of yeast cells, as a feed additive, proved its efficiency for escalating protein content and enhancing animal performance. © 2013 Society of Chemical Industry