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  • Author or Editor: V. Jurkovich x
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Non-starch polysaccharides (NSPs) form an integral part of the cell walls in plants and represent considerable available energy when degraded into absorbable mono-, di-, tri- and oligosaccharides. The ruminal microflora hydrolyses a good part of NSPs, however, recently there have been attempts to enhance the rate of utilisation by using external polysaccharidase enzymes. In the present study the effects of an enzyme preparation (Rumino-Zyme) high in xylanase activity were studied on ruminal volatile fatty acid (VFA) concentration, parameters of energy and protein metabolism, milk yield, feed conversion ratio (FCR) and body condition score of high-yielding dairy cows. A lignolytic enzyme preparation produced by the thermophilic fungus Thermomyces lanuginosus was applied in the present experiment and fed to dairy cows at 34 g/day dosage in the period between calving and the 110th day of lactation. This preparation increased VFA concentration in the rumen from about 32 days after calving and onward. Increased VFA concentration was followed by an about 5 to 10% increase in milk production and an almost 0.1% increase in butterfat production. Increased VFA concentration produced more balanced energy metabolism in the experimental cows as indicated by the lower incidence rate of hyperketonaemia, and lower acetoacetic acid and non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA) concentration in the blood of the experimental cows. Aspartate aminotransferase (AST) activity was tendentiously higher in the control group and the proportion of cows that had AST activity higher than 100U/l was also higher in the control group. Both control and experimental cows showed balanced protein and acid-base metabolism throughout the experiment. Enhanced VFA concentration contributed to an improvement in energy balance in the experimental cows with a resultant improvement of feed intake and feed utilisation. Due to the more balanced energy metabolism postparturient body condition loss of the treated cows was reduced.

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This paper describes the production of an enzyme preparation from the fungus Thermomyces lanuginosus. Thermal resistance, pH stability and lignocellulolytic activity of the enzyme preparation high in xylanase were studied on a variety of grains and forages. The enzyme preparation preserved more than 70% of its original xylanase activity for 4 and 1 h at 60 and 70 °C, respectively. The xylanase activity remained over 80% when the preparation was incubated for 30 min at pH 4.5. In vitro digestibility studies indicated that the enzyme digested 7.5, 8.5 and 8.0% of the dry matter (DM) of barley meal, wheat bran and oat meal samples, respectively. When applying 60-min incubation, 7.5, 7.3 and 8.4% of DM of the oat straw, alfalfa hay and triticale straw was digested, respectively. When the time of digestion was increased to 360 min, the sunflower hull showed 15.8% DM digestibility.

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A study was conducted to obtain data on the effects of a fungal fibrolytic enzyme preparation (Rumino-zyme, with 250 FXU/g xylanase activities) from Thermomyces lanuginosus on some rumen fermentation parameters in sheep. Ruminal fluid samples were taken just before the morning feeding and then 2 h and 4 h after feeding. Xylanase activity, pH, concentration of ammonia and volatile fatty acids were measured. The enzyme supplementation did not affect the pH but increased the xylanase activity and the total VFA concentration of the rumen fluid. The molar proportion of acetate increased, propionate was not affected and butyrate decreased after enzyme administration. The concentration of ammonia also decreased after supplementation with the enzyme product. It can be concluded that the xylanase enzyme preparation from T. lanuginosus induced favourable changes in the major rumen fermentation parameters in sheep.

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