The objective of the present study was to compare the effects of corn processing on performance and intestinal parameters of weanling piglets. To accomplish our goal, 42 piglets (21 days-old, 7.18±1.0 kg body weight) were randomly allocated (seven pens/treatment; three pigs/pen) to one of two treatments: ground corn – corn ground through a hammer mill with a 1.0-mm screen after being ground by a hammer mill with a 3.0-mm screen, and extruded corn – corn was wet extruded after being ground by a hammer mill with a 2.0-mm screen and, after extrusion, it was ground by a hammer mill with a 1.0-mm screen. In both methods, corn from the same batch was used. Results were considered statistically significant when P<0.05 and a tendency when P<0.10. Analyses were performed using the GLIMMIX procedure of SAS. Pigs fed ground or extruded corn diet had similar growth performance. Duodenum and jejunum of pigs fed extruded corn had greater villus height compared with those of pigs fed ground corn. Crypt depth was not influenced by corn processing. Duodenum and jejunum of pigs fed extruded corn had greater villus:crypt ratio compared with those of pigs fed ground corn. In the duodenum, the expression of zonula occludens-1 (ZO-1) was greater, and the expression of Occludin-1 tended to be greater in pigs fed the extruded corn diets. There was no effect of corn processing on ZO-1 and Occludin-1 expression in the jejunum, nor TGF-β1 expression in duodenum and jejunum. There was no effect of the type of corn processing on colonic total bacteria or Enterobacteriaceae and Lactobacillus abundance. Piglets fed diets with ground corn or extruded corn have similar growth performance. However, piglets fed diets with extruded corn present improved intestinal morphology and tight junction protein expression compared with those fed ground corn.
Scalco, T., da Cunha Valini, G. A., da Silva, C. B., Calderano, A. A., de Amorim Rodrigues, G., Campos, P. H. R. F., … Rocha, G. C. (2020). Effects of corn processing on piglet performance and intestinal parameters. Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia, 49. https://doi.org/10.37496/RBZ4920200133