Date of Award
Master of Science
John P. Hitchcock
Frank B. Masincupp, J. B. McLaren
In two experiments nursing piglets (156 Landrace x Yorkshire x Duroc pigs from the July 1979 farrowing and 146 Landrace x Yorkshire x Duroc pigs from the October 1979 farrowing), respectively, were used. Iron utilization resulting from oral dosing of the pig with different sources was compared to pigs receiving iron dextran injected intramuscularly. At the beginning of each experiment pigs were allotted, within litter, to one of four iron treatments, and all treatments were administered within the first 24 hours following birth. In Experiment 1 the treatments were (1) iron dextran injected intramuscularly, (2) iron dextran administered orally, (3) ferrous gluconate administered orally and (4) ferrous-L-aspartate administered orally. In Experiment 2 the treatments were (1) iron dextran injected intramuscularly, (2) iron dextran administered orally, (3) ferric nitrilotriacetic acid administered orally and (4) ferric oleate administered orally.
In both experiments the pigs were weighed and bled within 24 hours after birth (initial) and 1 and 4 weeks later. Various hematological analyses were performed on all blood samples. At 2 weeks of age pigs were offered creep feed ad libitum and consumption was measured from 2 to 4 weeks.
Results from these two experiments indicated that oral iron treatments were adequate for maintaining normal hematology, however the iron dextran injected intramuscularly produced higher hematological values. In Experiment 1, injected iron dextran produced significantly higher hematocrit and hemoglobin values than the three oral iron treatments. However, oral iron treatments supported normal hematocrit and hemoglobin values (> 8.0 g hemoglobin/dl whole blood and > 30.0% hematocrit).
Generally serum iron concentrations, pig weights and percent pigs weaned in Experiment 1 were similar for all iron treatments. Exceptions were: (1) Ferrous-L-aspartate treated pigs had significantly lower serum iron concentrations at 1 week of age than pigs injected with iron dextran. (2) Weights of pigs treated with ferrous gluconate had significantly lower weights than pigs injected with iron dextran. (3) Less than 60% of the ferrous-L-aspartate treated pigs lived to weaning.
In Experiment 2, hematology data were similar at week 1 for all treatments except for ferric nitrilotriacetic acid which resulted in lower hematological values. By week 4 the mean hemoglobin and hematocrit values of pigs treated with all oral iron treatments were significantly lower than those values for pigs injected with iron dextran. However, all oral iron treatments in Experiment 2 supported normal hematology during the 28 day lactation period.
Serum iron concentrations of pigs injected with iron dextran were higher at 1 week of age than that of pigs treated with ferric nitrilotriacetic acid or ferric oleate. No differences were observed at 1 week of age for serum iron concentrations of pigs injected with iron dextran or oral iron dextran treatments. Serum iron concentrations were similar in all treatments at 4 weeks of age.
Total iron binding capacity and percent saturation of transferrin were not significantly affected due to different iron treatments at any age.
In Experiment 2, the only observed difference with respect to pig weight was that pigs injected with iron dextran were significantly heavier than pigs treated with ferric nitrilotriacetic acid at all weigh periods. The percent of pigs weaned was similar for the pigs injected with iron dextran and those treated with oral iron dextran or ferric nitrilotriacetic acid. However, only 35.5% of the pigs treated with ferric oleate survived the 28 day lactation period. Feed consumption during Experiment 1 (0.30 kg per pig weaned) was only 1/2 that consumed in Experiment 2 (0.58 kg per pig weaned).
Allen, Gregory Steven, "Effect of form of oral iron administration prior to 24 hours of life on utilization of iron by nursing pigs. " Master's Thesis, University of Tennessee, 1980.