Tuesday, July 23, 2019
    

Completed Research

Ontario Pork has a call for research proposals twice a year (fall and spring). These projects were approved for funding by the board on recommendation of the research committee. If you have questions or need further information about the research posted here please contact Kathy Zurbrigg at kathy.zurbrigg@ontariopork.on.ca


Completed Research

Enhancement of Litter Size in Commercial Swine using an Immune Stimulant

Enhancement of Litter Size in Commercial Swine using an Immune Stimulant

Project 12-002 - Researcher: Dr. Chandra Tayade

Research Summary – Project 12/002
Researcher: Dr. Chandra Tayade, Queens University
Research Topic: Enhancement of Litter Size in Commercial Swine using an Immune Stimulant

Mycobacterial Cell Wall-DNA Complex (MCC) is a patented cell wall composition. MCC is a human treatment being studied for its effectiveness as a treatment against some cancers as well as a stimulatory activity on immune cells.  In an attempt to improve sow productivity, researchers from Queen’s University, led by Dr. Chandra Tayade, evaluated the use of an MCC product in sows. The researchers hypothesized that the treatment would stimulate improved blood vessel growth and function between the sow and piglets while in the uterus. Their hope was that this would result in bigger, more uniform piglets with fewer stillbirths. Second parity sows at the Arkell research station received the treatment of the immune therapy directly into their uterus at the time of insemination, and their litters were evaluated for a response in production parameters and compared to the litters from sows that were not treated. The researchers found that there was no difference in preweaning mortality, live born or still born numbers between the two groups.  However they did find that individual piglet and total weaning weight was higher in treated sow litters.  At slaughter there was no detectable difference in carcass quality between pigs from treated and untreated sows. Finally, gilts born from treated sows had higher live born in their first parity than those born to untreated sows, and as a result weaned more piglets per litter.  While the results are promising, this work is still in the very experimental stages.  Further research must be done to ensure these results are repeatable, that it is possible to get regulatory approval for the product’s use in food animals and to modify the treatment to ensure it would be affordable for use in agriculture. 
Further reading:
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0093691X15004240

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