Document Detail

Prenatal flavor exposure affects growth, health and behavior of newly weaned piglets.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  20138069     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Young animals can learn about flavors from the maternal diet that appear in the amniotic fluid and mother's milk, which may reduce neophobia for similarly flavored food types at weaning. Flavor learning may be beneficial for piglets, which after the rather abrupt weaning in pig husbandry frequently show a period of anorexia, reduced health, and stress-induced behaviors. We investigated the effects of pre- and postnatal flavor exposure through the maternal diet on acceptance of a similarly flavored food and subsequent growth, health and behavior of newly weaned piglets. Sows were offered anise-flavored (F) or control (C) food during late gestation. Piglets were cross-fostered after birth, with each sow fostering 5 piglets from an F sow and 5 from a C sow. During lactation, sows were offered F or C food, resulting in FF, CF, FC and CC piglets. Piglets were weaned on day 25 and were given both control and flavored food for two weeks using a double food choice approach. The flavored food was not preferred. Yet, prenatally exposed animals showed a higher food intake and a higher body weight in the first days after weaning, and a lower occurrence of diarrhoea than non-exposed piglets. Prenatal exposure also increased the latency to fight, and reduced oral manipulation of pen mates and mounting during the first two weeks after weaning. Prenatal exposure, but not postnatal exposure alone, to anisic flavor through the maternal diet reduced weaning-associated problems in piglets and enhanced their health and welfare in the period after weaning.
Marije Oostindjer; J Elizabeth Bolhuis; Henry van den Brand; Eugeni Roura; Bas Kemp
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't     Date:  2010-02-04
Journal Detail:
Title:  Physiology & behavior     Volume:  99     ISSN:  1873-507X     ISO Abbreviation:  Physiol. Behav.     Publication Date:  2010 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2010-03-16     Completed Date:  2010-06-09     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0151504     Medline TA:  Physiol Behav     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  579-86     Citation Subset:  IM    
Copyright Information:
(c) 2010 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Adaptation Physiology Group, Wageningen Institute of Animal Sciences, Wageningen University, Marijkeweg 40, P.O. Box 338, 6700 AH Wageningen, The Netherlands.
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MeSH Terms
Aggression / physiology
Animals, Newborn
Behavior, Animal / physiology*
Body Weight / drug effects,  physiology*
Diarrhea / chemically induced
Eating / drug effects,  physiology*
Flavoring Agents / administration & dosage*
Food Preferences / drug effects,  physiology*
Lactation / physiology
Maternal Exposure*
Pimpinella / chemistry
Reaction Time / physiology
Sexual Behavior, Animal / physiology
Swine / physiology
Time Factors
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Flavoring Agents

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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