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Perinatal flavour learning and adaptation to being weaned: all the pig needs is smell.

Oostindjer M, Bolhuis JE, Simon K, van den Brand H, Kemp B - PLoS ONE (2011)

Bottom Line: Previously we found positive effects of perinatal flavour learning on food intake, growth and behaviour of piglets postweaning, but no increased preference for the flavour.Few interaction effects were found between preweaning and postweaning treatment, and no effects of postweaning treatment.We conclude that in the newly weaned pig, perinatal flavour learning results in a reduction of stress when the familiar flavour is present, regardless of providing the flavour in the food or in the air.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Adaptation Physiology Group, Wageningen Institute of Animal Sciences, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands. marije.oostindjer@wur.nl

ABSTRACT
Perinatal flavour learning through the maternal diet is known to enhance flavour preference and acceptance of flavoured food in many species, yet still little is known about the mechanism underlying perinatal flavour learning. Previously we found positive effects of perinatal flavour learning on food intake, growth and behaviour of piglets postweaning, but no increased preference for the flavour. This suggests that flavour learning in pigs works through a reduction of weaning stress by the presence of the familiar flavour instead. The aim of this study was to investigate whether perinatal flavour learning reduces stress at weaning, and whether the effect is stronger when the familiar flavour is present in the food. Sows were offered an anethol-flavoured diet (Flavour treatment) or control diet (Control treatment) during late gestation and lactation. Flavour and Control piglets were provided with anethol either in their food (Food treatment) or in the air (Air treatment) after weaning. Preweaning and postweaning treatments did not affect food intake, preference or growth in the first two weeks postweaning but flavour treatment reduced the latency to eat (24 versus 35 hours, P = 0.02) and within-pen variation in growth (SD within-pen: 0.7 versus 1.2 kg, P<0.001). Salivary cortisol levels tended to be lower four and seven hours postweaning for Flavour piglets compared to Control piglets (4 hours: 2.5 versus 3.0 ng/ml, P = 0.05, 7 hours: 3.1 versus 3.4 ng/ml, P = 0.08). Flavour piglets played more and showed less damaging behaviours than Control piglets, indicating that the familiar flavour reduced stress around weaning. Few interaction effects were found between preweaning and postweaning treatment, and no effects of postweaning treatment. We conclude that in the newly weaned pig, perinatal flavour learning results in a reduction of stress when the familiar flavour is present, regardless of providing the flavour in the food or in the air.

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Salivary cortisol levels.Salivary cortisol levels on the day of before (A) and the day of weaning (B), sampled at the same time points on the day, for piglets exposed to Flavour through the maternal diet or Control piglets, housed in postweaning pens containing the flavour in the Food or in the Air. #: P<0.1. Different superscripts indicate significantly different values (a/b) and values that tend to be different (z/y).
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pone-0025318-g001: Salivary cortisol levels.Salivary cortisol levels on the day of before (A) and the day of weaning (B), sampled at the same time points on the day, for piglets exposed to Flavour through the maternal diet or Control piglets, housed in postweaning pens containing the flavour in the Food or in the Air. #: P<0.1. Different superscripts indicate significantly different values (a/b) and values that tend to be different (z/y).

Mentions: Preweaning treatment tended to affect cortisol levels over the three time points measured postweaning, with piglets in the Flavour treatment showing lower levels than Control piglets (F(1,43) = 3.53, P = 0.07, Figure 1). Flavour-exposed piglets showed lower cortisol levels four hours after weaning (F(1,41) = 4.17, P = 0.05) and tended to have lower cortisol levels seven hours after weaning (F(1,42) = 3.19, P = 0.08). Cortisol levels over the three time points measured postweaning were unaffected by postweaning treatment (P = 0.57), or by an interaction between pre- and postweaning treatment (P = 0.21).


Perinatal flavour learning and adaptation to being weaned: all the pig needs is smell.

Oostindjer M, Bolhuis JE, Simon K, van den Brand H, Kemp B - PLoS ONE (2011)

Salivary cortisol levels.Salivary cortisol levels on the day of before (A) and the day of weaning (B), sampled at the same time points on the day, for piglets exposed to Flavour through the maternal diet or Control piglets, housed in postweaning pens containing the flavour in the Food or in the Air. #: P<0.1. Different superscripts indicate significantly different values (a/b) and values that tend to be different (z/y).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

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getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3198439&req=5

pone-0025318-g001: Salivary cortisol levels.Salivary cortisol levels on the day of before (A) and the day of weaning (B), sampled at the same time points on the day, for piglets exposed to Flavour through the maternal diet or Control piglets, housed in postweaning pens containing the flavour in the Food or in the Air. #: P<0.1. Different superscripts indicate significantly different values (a/b) and values that tend to be different (z/y).
Mentions: Preweaning treatment tended to affect cortisol levels over the three time points measured postweaning, with piglets in the Flavour treatment showing lower levels than Control piglets (F(1,43) = 3.53, P = 0.07, Figure 1). Flavour-exposed piglets showed lower cortisol levels four hours after weaning (F(1,41) = 4.17, P = 0.05) and tended to have lower cortisol levels seven hours after weaning (F(1,42) = 3.19, P = 0.08). Cortisol levels over the three time points measured postweaning were unaffected by postweaning treatment (P = 0.57), or by an interaction between pre- and postweaning treatment (P = 0.21).

Bottom Line: Previously we found positive effects of perinatal flavour learning on food intake, growth and behaviour of piglets postweaning, but no increased preference for the flavour.Few interaction effects were found between preweaning and postweaning treatment, and no effects of postweaning treatment.We conclude that in the newly weaned pig, perinatal flavour learning results in a reduction of stress when the familiar flavour is present, regardless of providing the flavour in the food or in the air.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Adaptation Physiology Group, Wageningen Institute of Animal Sciences, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands. marije.oostindjer@wur.nl

ABSTRACT
Perinatal flavour learning through the maternal diet is known to enhance flavour preference and acceptance of flavoured food in many species, yet still little is known about the mechanism underlying perinatal flavour learning. Previously we found positive effects of perinatal flavour learning on food intake, growth and behaviour of piglets postweaning, but no increased preference for the flavour. This suggests that flavour learning in pigs works through a reduction of weaning stress by the presence of the familiar flavour instead. The aim of this study was to investigate whether perinatal flavour learning reduces stress at weaning, and whether the effect is stronger when the familiar flavour is present in the food. Sows were offered an anethol-flavoured diet (Flavour treatment) or control diet (Control treatment) during late gestation and lactation. Flavour and Control piglets were provided with anethol either in their food (Food treatment) or in the air (Air treatment) after weaning. Preweaning and postweaning treatments did not affect food intake, preference or growth in the first two weeks postweaning but flavour treatment reduced the latency to eat (24 versus 35 hours, P = 0.02) and within-pen variation in growth (SD within-pen: 0.7 versus 1.2 kg, P<0.001). Salivary cortisol levels tended to be lower four and seven hours postweaning for Flavour piglets compared to Control piglets (4 hours: 2.5 versus 3.0 ng/ml, P = 0.05, 7 hours: 3.1 versus 3.4 ng/ml, P = 0.08). Flavour piglets played more and showed less damaging behaviours than Control piglets, indicating that the familiar flavour reduced stress around weaning. Few interaction effects were found between preweaning and postweaning treatment, and no effects of postweaning treatment. We conclude that in the newly weaned pig, perinatal flavour learning results in a reduction of stress when the familiar flavour is present, regardless of providing the flavour in the food or in the air.

Show MeSH