Relationships between Methionine Supply, Nitrogen Retention and Plasma Insulin-like Growth Factor-I in Growing Sheep Nourished by Total Intragastric Infusions

  • Li, Chong (College of Animal Science and Technology, Gansu Agricultural University) ;
  • Zhao, Guangyong (State Key Laboratory of Animal Nutrition, College of Animal Science and Technology, China Agricultural University)
  • Received : 2011.02.20
  • Accepted : 2011.05.11
  • Published : 2011.10.01


Four 4-month old Charolais${\times}$Dorset male sheep (initial liveweight $25.0{\pm}1.1\;kg$), fitted with rumen and abomasal fistulas and nourished by total intragastric infusions, were used to study the relationships between methionine (Met) supply, nitrogen (N) retention and plasma insulin-like growth factor-I (IGF-I). Four graded levels of Met, i.e. 0 g/16 g N, 1.76 g/16 g N, 3.52 g/16 g N and 7.04 g/16 g N, were infused into abomasums as experimental treatments. The sheep and treatments were allocated in a $4{\times}3$ incomplete Latin square design (Yudon square design). The experiment lasted 3 periods and each period was 10 days. Quadratic correlations were found between Met level (x, g/16 g N) and N retention (y, g/d): y = $-0.03x^2$+0.41x+2.62, $r^2$ = 0.66, n = 12, p = 0.008, and between methionine level (x, g/16 g N) and plasma IGF-I concentration (y, ng/ml): y = $0.80x^2$-4.53x+190.24, $r^2$ = 0.51, n = 12, p = 0.009. No significant correlation was found between plasma IGF-I (x, ng/ml) and N retention (y, g/d) (p>0.05). It was concluded that Met level had a significant influence on N retention and plasma IGF-I concentration whereas IGF-I might not be an important mediator in the regulation of N metabolism by Met in growing sheep nourished by total intragastric infusions.


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