Document Detail

Effects of rearing temperature and level of food intake on organ size and tissue composition in piglets.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2766099     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Piglets are particularly susceptible to cold and nutritional stress because of their poor insulation and low body fat. The purpose of this study was to examine how ambient temperature and level of food intake affect development in piglets. Thirty-two piglets were reared individually from 14 to 56 days of age in either a cold (10 degrees C) or a warm (35 degrees C) environment. Two feeding regimens, restricted and ad libitum, were used to assess the effect of food intake on organ mass. The ad libitum fed pigs in both environments gained weight at the same rate. Paired t-tests of organ weights of ad libitum fed pigs revealed that the mass of the heart, liver, kidneys, stomach, and small intestine, and total nitrogen and the length of the small intestine were greater in cold-reared than in warm-reared littermates of the same body weight. The skin mass and total fat mass, the lengths of the body, extremities, and individual long bones, and the total surface area were greater in warm-reared than in cold-reared individuals. A regression analysis showed body weight was the most important determinant of size for all tissues measured except fat mass, which was affected slightly more by rearing temperature. Of the organs and tissue components that differed in size in warm- and cold-reared pigs, heart, kidney, stomach, skin, nitrogen, and fat mass, and small intestine length and surface area were generally affected more by rearing temperature than by level of food intake. Liver and small intestine mass and femur length were affected more by level of food intake.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
M E Heath
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Canadian journal of physiology and pharmacology     Volume:  67     ISSN:  0008-4212     ISO Abbreviation:  Can. J. Physiol. Pharmacol.     Publication Date:  1989 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1989-10-06     Completed Date:  1989-10-06     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0372712     Medline TA:  Can J Physiol Pharmacol     Country:  CANADA    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  526-32     Citation Subset:  IM    
ARC Institute of Animal Physiology, Cambridge, England.
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MeSH Terms
Aging / physiology
Body Composition
Body Weight
Fats / metabolism
Nitrogen / metabolism
Organ Size
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Fats; 7727-37-9/Nitrogen

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