Effect of increasing ruminal butyrate on portal and hepatic nutrient flux in steers.

C. R. Krehbiel, D. L. Harmon, J. E. Schneider

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82 Scopus citations


Six Holstein steers (mean +/- SE BW = 344 +/- 10 kg) fitted with hepatic, portal, and mesenteric vein and mesenteric artery catheters and a ruminal cannula were used in a 6 x 6 Latin square design to evaluate the effects of increasing ruminal butyrate on net portal-drained visceral and hepatic nutrient flux. Steers were fed a 40% brome hay, 60% concentrate diet in 12 portions daily at 1.25 x NEm. Water (control) or butyrate at 50, 100, 150, 200, or 250 mmol/h was supplied continuously via the ruminal cannula. Simultaneous arterial, portal, and hepatic blood samples were taken at hourly intervals from 15 to 20 h of ruminal infusion. Portal and hepatic blood flow was determined by continuous infusion of P-aminohippurate, and net nutrient flux was calculated as the difference between venous and arterial concentrations times blood flow. Ruminal and arterial concentrations and total splanchnic flux of butyrate increased (P less than .01) with increased butyrate infusion. Arterial concentrations of acetate (P less than .10), alpha-amino-N (P less than .05), and glucose (P less than .01) decreased with increased butyrate, whereas arterial beta-hydroxybutyrate (P less than .01) and acetoacetate (P less than .05) increased. Increased butyrate produced an increased portal-drained visceral flux of acetoacetate and an increased net hepatic flux of beta-hydroxybutyrate. Urea N and glucose net portal and hepatic fluxes were not affected by ruminal butyrate. Alpha-amino-N uptake by the liver decreased with increased butyrate (P less than .10). Simple linear regression (r2 = .985) indicated that 25.8% of ruminally infused butyrate appeared in portal blood as butyrate. Only 14% could be accounted for as net portal-drained visceral flux of acetoacetate plus beta-hydroxybutyrate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)904-914
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Animal Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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