Effect on hepatonephric organs, serum metabolites and oxidative stress in post-weaning piglets fed purified zearalenone-contaminated diets with or without Calibrin-Z


Z. B. Yang, Department of Animal Sciences and Technology, Shandong Agricultural University, Tai’an, Shandong 271018, China. Tel: +86 0538 8241257; Fax: +86 0538 8249371; E-mail: yzb204@163.com


The objectives of this study were to investigate the toxicity of zearalenone (ZEA) on hepatonephric organs, serum metabolites and oxidative stress of piglets and to evaluate the efficacy of Calibrin-Z (CAZ) in preventing ZEA-induced adverse effects. The experiment was conducted for 22 days using 36 piglets weaned at 21 days of age (Landrace × Yorkshire × Duroc, 18 females and 18 males; 8.84 ± 0.21 kg average body weight). Piglets of each gender were randomly allocated to the following six dietary treatments: (i) Control (basal diet only); (ii) Control + 1 g/kg CAZ; (iii) Control + 1 mg/kg ZEA; (iv) Control + 1 mg/kg ZEA + 1 g/kg CAZ; (v) Control + 1 mg/kg ZEA + 2 g/kg CAZ; (vi) Control + 1 mg/kg ZEA + 4 g/kg CAZ. Piglets were housed and fed individually for the entire experimental period. Blood samples were taken, and piglets were killed at the end of the experiment to obtain organs for physiological assessment. Results showed that piglets fed the ZEA-contaminated diet had increased (p < 0.05) activities of aspartate aminotransferase, alanine aminotransferase, alkaline phosphatase, gamma-glutamyltransferase (GGT), creatine kinase and cholinesterase, concentrations of urea, and creatinine in serum, and malondialdehyde (MDA) in serum and liver. Pigs fed the ZEA-only diet also showed reductions in serum (p < 0.05) globulin, triglycerides and high-density lipoproteins (HDL), and reductions in total superoxide dismutase (TSOD) and glutathione peroxidase (GSHPx) activity in both serum and liver. Supplementation of CAZ at the dosages of 1–4 g/kg to the diet containing 1.05 mg/kg ZEA linearly increased (p < 0.05) concentrations of triglycerides and HDL in serum, activity of TSOD and GSHPx in serum and liver, but linearly reduced (p < 0.05) all tested serum enzymes and lowered (p < 0.05) the elevated concentrations of urea, and creatinine in serum, and MDA in serum and liver caused by dietary ZEA. Piglets fed the ZEA-contaminated diet showed increased (p < 0.05) relative weight of liver and kidney compared with the control, whereas only numerical improvement on relative weight of liver and kidney was observed with simultaneous addition of CAZ at 4 g/kg diet and ZEA. However, feeding the diet with CAZ alone at 1 g/kg had no impact on any of the measured parameters when compared to the control. It is suggested that feeding ZEA at 1.05 mg/kg exerted a deleterious effect on piglets, which was totally or partly ameliorated by dietary supplementation of CAZ at concentrations between 1 and 4 g/kg diet.