The effect of intestinal microflora on digestible energy (DE) value and fiber digestion was studied in single-comb White Leghorn chickens fed a low-fiber diet (experiment 1) or a high-fiber diet with low or adequate metabolizable energy (ME) value (experiment 2). Fecal energy excretion was calculated from the difference between total energy excretion in urinary and fecal droppings and urinary energy excretion, which was estimated from the energy values for individual urinary nitrogenous compounds extracted with Li2CO3. When the birds were fed the low-fiber diet, no differences in growth, DE, or ME were observed between germ-free and conventional environments. Of birds fed the high-fiber diet, growth of those in the conventional environment was similar to that of the birds in the germ-free environment at the adequate ME value, whereas birds in the conventional environment grew faster than the birds in the germ-free environment at the low ME value. Changes in observed dietary ME values of the high-fiber diets, being higher in birds in the conventional environment than in birds in the germ-free environment (experiment 2), were almost entirely accounted for by those in dietary DE values, most of which was contributed by crude fiber digestion. It was concluded, therefore, that by means of fiber digestion, the intestinal microflora may benefit the host bird by supplying extra energy, which would result in growth promotion, particularly when the bird is deficient in energy.
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||American journal of veterinary research|
|Publication status||Published - Jan 1 1991|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes