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Table 2 Summary of growth performance results when using medium-chain fatty acids and monoglycerides as feed additives

From: Medium-chain fatty acids and monoglycerides as feed additives for pig production: towards gut health improvement and feed pathogen mitigation

Test additiveRateDevelopment stageKey findingsRef.
Caprylic acid/capric acid (6:4 blend)8%Weaned pigs at d 21 and evaluated for 28 subsequent days (n = 164 pigs)-FCR was best with fatty acid-containing diet
-Decreased serum urea levels, suggesting improved energy utilization
-Increased serum triglyceride levels
Caprylic acid0.5%Weaned pigs around d 28–32 and evaluated for 21 subsequent days (n = 120 pigs)-Significantly improved growth performance compared to control group and another group fed 1% triglycerides of capric and caprylic acids
-Shedding of Cryptosporidium oocysts was delayed and less intense
Blend of MCFAs (caproic, caprylic, capric, and lauric acids)0.5%Piglets around d 7 and evaluated for 77 subsequent days (n = 183 pigs)-Tended to improve overall ADG, with significant differences between days 35–56
-Tended to improve feed efficiency (smaller FCR)
-Decreased Clostridium levels in the small intestine digesta
Caprylic acid or capric acid0.2%Weaned pigs at d 35 and evaluated for 49 subsequent days (n = 252 pigs)-Improved ADG
-Best FCR in pigs receiving caprylic acid-containing diet
-Decreased mortality and increased protein and fiber digestibility
-Reduced Clostridium perfringens levels
-Improved mucosal epithelium structure of ileum
Caproic, caprylic, and capric acids (individual or 1:1:1 blend)0.25–1.5%Weaned pigs (7–23 kg body weight) for 35 d (n = 360 pigs)-Improved ADG, AFDI, and FCR with higher MCFA blend dose
-Caprylic acid yielded best growth performance among individual MCFAs
Caproic, caprylic, and capric acids (1:1:1 blend) or one of two blends (12:48:40 or 4:54:38 ratio)1%Weaned pigs (6 kg initial body weight) from d 27 for 29 subsequent daysa (n = 100 pigs)-Improved FCR in E. coli-challenged pigs with MCFA-containing diets
-Similar growth performance level of MCFA- or chlortetracycline antibiotic-containing diets
Lauric acid/GML0.1%Weaned pigs during the entire weaning period (7–25 kg body weight) and breeding sowsb-Significant reduction in the use of antimicrobials in breeding sows
-Daily dose per animal yearc was reduced by around 8 d in the test herds
Caprylic acid and capric acid blend0.15–0.3%Growing pigs (28 kg initial body weight) for 35 subsequent days (n = 140 pigs)-Improved ADG (equivalent performance to growth-promoting antibiotic mixture)
-Increased lymphocyte percentages and IgG concentrations in pig blood
  1. aWeaning occurred at d 22
  2. bData were reported from 33 test farms which used the feed additive (median of 440 sows per farm) and 29 control farms (median of 685 sows per farm)
  3. cDetailed information about the calculation details and a sample calculation are provided in the Material and Methods section of Ref. [69]