The Effect of Dietary Supplementation of Feather Meal on the Performance and Muscular Taurine Contents in Growing-finishing Pigs

  • Seo, S.H. (Cargill Agri Purina Inc.) ;
  • Jung, B.Y. (Department of Poultry Science, University of Georgia) ;
  • Lee, M.K. (CTC Bio Co. Ltd.) ;
  • Lee, B.H. (Department of Food and Nutrition, Chung Ang University) ;
  • Paik, I.K. (Department of Animal Science and Technology, College of Industrial Sciences, Chung-Ang University)
  • Received : 2009.02.23
  • Accepted : 2009.04.20
  • Published : 2009.10.01


An experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of dietary supplementation of feather meal (FM) on the performance of pigs and taurine content in pork. A total of 135 cross-bred (L${\times}$Y${\times}$D) pigs, weighing an average 46 kg, were assigned to five dietary treatments; Control, 3% FM supplemented diet (3% FM), 3% FM and 10 ppm pyridoxin supplemented diet (3% FMpyridoxin), 6% FM supplemented diet (6% FM) and 6% FM and 10 ppm pyridoxine supplemented diet (6% FM-pyridoxin). Each treatment had 3 replications of 9 pigs (4 gilts and 5 barrows) each. Pigs were fed for 11 weeks under a phase feeding program which consisted of grower (0-3 week), grow-finisher (4-8 week) and finisher (9-11 week) periods. During the whole feeding period, ADG and ADFI of pigs fed FM treatments tended to increase in general compared to the control. Feed conversion ratio (feed/gain) of the control was significantly (p<0.05) lower than FM treatments. Taurine content of the control was highest in heart muscle (1,393.8 ppm) followed by liver (647.3 ppm), tenderloin (601.2 ppm), ham (462.4 ppm) and loin (375.8 ppm). Taurine contents of heart, tenderloin, ham and loin were significantly (p<0.05) increased by FM treatments. Taurine content was highest in the 6% FM-pyridoxin treatment. Taurine content of heart, tenderloin, ham and loin on 6% FM-pyridoxin supplementation were increased by 91%, 23%, 27% and 29%, respectively, compared with the control. Sensory tests of the pork showed that there was no consistent response among the treatments. In conclusion, supplementation of FM and pyridoxin to a pig diet can increase taurine content of the pork.


Taurine;Feather Meal;Pyridoxin;Pork


Supported by : Agricultural R & D Promotion Center


  1. Alvarez, J. G. and B. T. Storey. 1983, Taurine, hypotaurine, epinephrine and albumin inhibit lipid peroxidation in rabbit spermatozoa and protect against loss of motility, Biol. Oct29(3):548-555
  2. AOAC. 1990, Official method of analysis, 15th ed, Association of Official Analysis Chemists, Arlington, Virginia, USA
  3. Chapman, G. E. and C. E. Greenwood. 1988, Taurine in nutrition and brain development, Nutr. Res 8: 955-968
  4. Davis, J. M. and W. A. Himwich. 1973, Amino acids and proteins of developing mammalian brain, Biochemistry of the developing brain (Ed. W. A. Himwich). New York: Dekker, p.55-110
  5. Ikuyama, S., T. Okajima, K. I. Kato and H. Ibayashi. 1988, Effect of taurine on growth hormone and prolactin secretion in rats: possible interaction with opiod peptidergic system, Life Sci 43:807-812
  6. Jang, H. Y., H. S. Kong, C. K. Park, J. D. Oh, S. G. Lee, H. T. Cheong, J. T. Kim, S. J. Lee, B. K. Yang and H. K. Lee. 2006, Effects of taurine on sperm characteristics during in vitro storage of boar semen, Asian-Aust. J. Anim. Sci 19(11):1561-1565
  7. Kantro, P., K. M. Marnela and S. S. Oja. 1984. GABA, Taurine and hypotaurine in developing mouse brain, Acta Physiol.Scand. Suppl 537:71-74
  8. NRC. 1998, Nutrient requirements of Swine (10th Ed.) National Academy Press, Washington, DC
  9. Waterfield, C. J., J. A. Turton, M. D. Scales and J. A. Timbrell 1993, Investigations into the effects of various hepatotoxic compounds on urinary and liver taurine levels in rats, Arch.Toxicol 67:244-254
  10. Yokogoshi, H., H. Mochizuki, K. Nanami, Y. Hida, F. Miyachi and H. Oda. 1999, Dietary taurine enhances cholesterol degradation and reduces serum and liver cholesterol concentrations in rats fed a high-cholesterol diet,J. Nutr129(9):1705-1712
  11. Huxtable, R. J. 1992, Physiological actions of taurine, Physiol. Rev 72:101-163
  12. Lee, S. M., H. S. Lim, W. Y. Kim and I. K. Paik. 2004, The effects of dietary supplementation of feather meal digests on the performances and muscular Taurine contents in broiler chickens, J. Anim. Sci. Technol(Kor.) 46(5):753-762
  13. Lee, D. N., Y. H. Cheng, Y. S. Chuang, J. L. Shive, Y. M. Lian, H. W. Wei and C. F. Weng. 2004, Effects of dietary taurine supplementation on growth performance, serum constituents and antibody production of broilers, Asian-Aust. J. Anim. Sci.17(1):109-115
  14. Sturman, J. A. and K. C. Hayes. 1980, The biology of taurine in nutrition and development. In: Advances in nutritional research (Ed. H. H. Draper), Plenum Press, New York, 3:231
  15. Arzate, M. E., J. Moran and H. Pasantes-Morales. 1986, Inhibitory effect of taurine on 4-amino-pyridine-stimulated release of labeled dopamine from striatal synaptosomes, Neuropharmacology 25(7):689-694
  16. Worden, J. A. and M. H. Stipanuk. 1985, A comparison by species, age and sex of cysteinsulfinate decarboxylase activity and taurine concentration, Comp. Biochem. Physio 82B:233-239
  17. Ding, W. G., I. Tooyama, H. Kimura, K. Kuriyama and J. Ochi. 1993, Distribution of taurine-like immunoreactivity in the mouse liver during ontogeny and after carbon tetrachloride or phenobarbital intoxication, Histochem. J 25:376-383
  18. Lampson, W. G., J. H. Kramer and S. W. Schaffer. 1983, Potentiation of the actions of insulin by taurine, Can. J. Physiol. Pharmacol 61:457-463
  19. Morris, W. C. and S. L. Balloun. 1973, Effect of processing methods on utilization of feather meal by broiler chicks, Poult. Sci 52:858
  20. Pittaluga, A., A. Bonfanti and M. Raiteri. 1977, Differential desensitization of ionotropic non-NMDA receptors having distinct neuronal location and function, Naunyn-Schmiedeberg Archiv fur Pharmakologie 356:29-38
  21. Raizada, M. K., J. A. Sturman and G. E. Gaull. 1982, Sulfur amino acid metabolism in the developing rhesus monkey brain: interrelationship of taurine and glutamate: Neurochem. Res 7:1107-1118
  22. Moran, E. T.., J. D. Jr. Summers and S. J. Slinger. 1966, Keratin as a source of protein for the growing chicks, Poult. Sci 45:1257-1266
  23. Rigo, J. and J. Senterre. 1977, Is taurine essential for the neonates? Biol. Neonates 32:73
  24. Lefauconnier, J., C. Portemer and F. Chatagner. 1976, Free amino acids and related substances in human glial tumours and in fetal brain: comparison with normal adult brain, Brain Res 117: 105-113
  25. Schor, R. and S. Krimm. 1961, Studies on the structure of feather keratin II. A β-helix model for the structure of feather keratin, Biophys. J 1:489
  26. Sturman, J. A. 1982, Taurine in nutrition research, Sulfur amino acid 5:53-65
  27. Chandra, R. and W. A. Himwich. 1970, Taurine levels in developing rabbit brain and other organs, Dev. Psychol 3:191-196
  28. Gaull, G. E. 1983, Taurine in human milk: growth modulator or conditionally essential amino acid, J. Pediatr. Gastroenterol. Nutr 21(Suppl. 1):5266-5271
  29. Maturo, J. and E. C. Kulakowski. 1988, Taurine binding to the purified insulin receptor, Biochem. Pharmacol 37: 3755-3760
  30. Li, J., R. H. Foote and M. Simkin. 1993, Development of rabbit zygotes cultured in protein-free medium with catalase, taurine, or superoxide dismutase, Biol. Reprod. 49:33-37
  31. Hayes, K. C. and J. A. Sturman. 1981, Taurine deficiency: a rational for taurine depletion, Adv. Exp. Med. Biol 139: 79-87
  32. Scheibel, J., T. Elsasser and J. G Ondo. 1980, Stimulation of prolactin secretion by taurine, a neurally depressant amino acid, Neuroendocrinology 30:250-354
  33. Trachtman, H., S. Futterweit and R. S. Bienkowski. 1993, Taurine prevents glucose-induced lipid peroxidation and increased collagen production in cultured rat mesangial cells, Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun 191:759-765
  34. Hayes, K. C. 1985, Taurine requirement in primates, Nutr. Rev 43:65-70
  35. Chesney, R. W. 1985, Taurine: its biological role and clinical implications, Adv. Pediatr 32:1-42
  36. Jang, H. Y., H. S. Kong, J. D. Oh, B. K. Park, B. K. Yang, G. J. Jeon and H. K. Lee. 2008, Maintenance of sperm characteristics and in vitro developmental rate of embryos against oxidative stress through antioxidants in pigs, Asian- Aust. J. Anim. Sci 21(3):340-345
  37. Lieu, P. L., S. Croswell and R. J. Huxtable. 1992, Phospholipids, phospholipids methylation and taurine content in synaptosomes of developing rat brain, In: Taurine (Ed. J. B. Lombardini, W. S. Stephen, A. Azuma). pp. 339-404
  38. Nakaya, T., A. Minami, N. Harada, S. Sakamoto, Y. Niwaand and M. Ohnaka. 2000, Taurine improves insulin sensitivity in the atsuka long-evanstokushima fatty rat, a model of spontaneous type 2 diabetes, Am. J. Clin. Nutr 71(1):54-58
  39. Duncan, D. B. 1995, Multiple range and multiple F tests, Biometrics 11:1-42
  40. Harrap, B. S. and E. F. Woods. 1964, Soluble derivatives of feather keratin; Isolation, fractionation amino acid composition, Biochem. J 92:8
  41. Smith, R. E. 1968, Assessment of the availability of amino acids in fish meal, soybean meal and feather meal by chick growthassay, Poult. Sci 47:1624-1630
  42. Chan, P. H. and R. A. Fishman. 1979, Elevation of rat brain amino acids, ammonia and idiogenic osmoles induced by hyperosmolality, Brain Res 161:293
  43. Paola, Z. and E. Filippo. 1999, Determination of free amino acids in infant formulars, Int. Dairy J 9:653-656
  44. SAS Institute Inc. 1995, SAS user’s guide: Statistics. Version 6. 12 Edition, SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC