Technical review of the energy and protein requirements of growing pigs: protein



Whittemore CT, Green D & Knap PW (2001) Technical review of the energy and protein requirements of growing pigs: protein. Animal Science, 73, pp. 363-373.

A review of work reported in the literature was used to present quantitative descriptions of protein use in the growing pig. These are detailed in the text, which also points to preferred values, and to anomalies and lacunae. The review was prepared with the objective of allowing from its content the inclusive and quantitative modelling of amino acid requirement. Requirement was approached as the sum of the component factors: maintenance and protein retention. Ileal true digestible protein and amino acid requirements are presented in a form consistent with that forwarded for energy. Thus both energy and protein elements can be conceptualized within a single coherent framework. Priority uses for absorbed amino acids were assumed to be (a) to support endogenous protein losses resultant from the passage of food and incomplete re-absorption prior to the terminal ileum, (b) to replace lost hair and skin, and (c) to cover the basic maintenance losses which will occur as a result of minimal protein turn-over even when protein retention is zero. The bulk of the protein requirement was directly linked to the daily rate of protein retention, for which the linear-plateau response was accepted. For determination of the maximum rate of protein retention the Gompertz function was proposed, although the use of a single value throughout the growth period was not dismissed. The balance of amino acids for protein retention is specified as different from that for maintenance. Central to the approach was the proposal that the inefficiency of use of ileal digested ideal protein, even when not supplied in excess, was an expression of protein losses occurring as a result of protein turn-over. The requirement for the satisfaction of the losses from protein turn-over occurring as a consequence of protein retention, and therefore additional to the requirements for maintenance, was identified. Quantification was attempted with sufficient success to warrant its inclusion into requirement estimation. It was concluded that this element addressed previously inadequately explained protein utilization inefficiencies. Algorithms are presented based upon protein turn-over which appear to be consistent with empirical findings.

nutrient requirements; pigs; protein

Animal Science: Volume 73

Publication date31/12/2001
PublisherBritish Society of Animal Science/ Cambridge University Press

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Dr Darren Green

Dr Darren Green

Senior Lecturer, Institute of Aquaculture