Assessment of chromium tripicolinate supplementation and dietary protein level on growth, carcass, and blood criteria in growing pigs

C. P.A. Van De Ligt, M. D. Lindemann, G. L. Cromwell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


This study was conducted to evaluate potential interactive effects of supplemental Cr and dietary protein levels in growing pigs. Thirty-six individually penned barrows, 22 to 63 kg, were used in a 2 x 3 factorial arrangement of supplemental Cr (0 or 200 ppb from chromium tripicolinate) and protein level (76, 83, or 90% of lysine requirement). A corn-soybean meal basal diet was designed to supply all mineral and vitamin needs, 90% of the estimated metabolizable energy need, and 76% of the estimated protein need at 70% of ad libitum feed intake. Additional protein to 83 or 90% of the lysine requirement was provided by a soy protein isolate supplement. Growth data were collected for a 50-d period, and pigs were killed at a mean of 63 kg BW. Increasing lysine levels linearly (P < 0.01) increased ADG and liver weight. Lysine level had a quadratic effect on 10th rib backfat thickness (P < 0.05) and cooler shrink (P < 0.01) with the highest responses at the 83% lysine level. Increasing lysine level linearly decreased (P < 0.05) carcass content of ash and lipid and quadratically increased the carcass water content (P < 0.01). Carcass accretion rate showed a linear increase for protein (P < 0.01) and water accretion (P < 0.01). Dry matter composition of the longissimus muscle showed linear increases of ash (P < 0.05) and protein (P < 0.01) and a linear decrease of lipid content (P < 0.01) resulting in a linear increase (P < 0.05) of the protein to lipid ratio based on the increasing lysine levels. Pre-feeding insulin levels were increased (P < 0.05) with increasing level of lysine. One hour post-feeding, a quadratic lysine response for plasma glucose (P < 0.05) was observed with the lowest concentration at 83% lysine. Cr addition increased 10th rib backfat thickness (P < 0.10). There was no Cr x lysine level interaction (P > 0.10) observed for any of the growth or carcass traits. Plasma glucose concentrations pre-feeding were lower for Cr-supplemented pigs (P < 0.01). As expected, increasing protein levels in protein-deficient diets increased protein accretion while decreasing lipid accretion in 22 to 63 kg growing pigs; however, these effects were more clearly seen in the longissimus muscle than in the entire carcass. Supplementation of Cr exerted only minor effects with few Cr x lysine interactions observed in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2412-2419
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Animal Science
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2002


  • Carcasses
  • Chromium
  • Growth
  • Pigs
  • Protein

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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