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Determination of true absorption and fecal endogenous loss of zinc in goats

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We determined the true absorption and endogenous fecal loss of zinc (Zn) in goats using its stable isotope. Three goats were fed with the diet containing 50 mg/kg Zn twice a day for 17 days. In the morning of day 11, the goats were given a meal labeled by 67Zn as the tracer with dysprosium as the unabsorbed marker. Then the goats were given unlabeled diet as the rest of the morning feed. We measured dietary and fecal Zn concentration, 67Zn abundance and dysprosium concentration in feces. The excretion pattern of the tracer Zn into feces differed from that of dysprosium. Therefore, we directly calculated the true absorption of Zn from Zn concentration and 67Zn abundance in fecal samples collected after the labeled diet was given. The apparent absorption of Zn was –0.009 ± 0.016 mg/kg bodyweight (fractional absorption, −1.07 ± 1.85%). The true absorption of Zn was 0.162 ± 0.018 mg/kg bodyweight (fractional absorption, 18.25 ± 2.01%). The endogenous fecal loss of Zn was 0.172 ± 0.004 mg/kg bodyweight and the intestinal secretion of Zn was 0.210 ± 0.009 mg/kg bodyweight. The present experiment indicates that stable isotopic Zn is a powerful tool for examining Zn metabolism in ruminants.
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Keywords: endogenous fecal loss; goat; stable isotope; true absorption; zinc metabolism

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: National Food Research Institute, National Agriculture and Food Research Organization, Tsukuba, Ibaraki, and 2: Graduate School of Agriculture, Kyoto University, Kyoto, Japan

Publication date: October 1, 2010

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