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Ciência Rural

On-line version ISSN 1678-4596


SILVA, Leila Picolli da  and  NORNBERG, José Laerte. Prebiotics in nonruminants nutrition. Cienc. Rural [online]. 2003, vol.33, n.5, pp.983-990. ISSN 1678-4596.

Due to the increasing constraint on the use of veterinary drugs as growth promoters in nonruminants nutrition there is a need to develop alternatives in supporting the microflora of the digestive tract in their approach to control pathogenic bacteria. The prebiotics are resistant compounds to digestion in the animal digestive tract, but selectively fermentable by intestinal microflora. These compounds can beneficially affect native microbiota, immune system and intestinal mucosal improving the digestion and absorption of nutrients. However, not always the use of the prebiotics causes alterations in the biological response. There may be several factors involved that partly explain the lack of response, such as: differences in the chemical composition of the ingredients of the diet, differences in the levels (percentage) of the prebiotics used in the diet, adaptation and the selectivity of the microflora and stress factors.

Keywords : intestinal microflora; gastrointestinal tract; growth promoting; non-digestible oligosaccharides.

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