Dietary ω-6 to ω-3 Fatty Acid Ratios Affect Protein Deposition in Nursery Pigs
An experiment was conducted to determine if decreasing the dietary omega-6 (ω-6) to omega-3 (ω-3) fatty acid (FA) ratio would affect protein deposition in nursery pigs during a prolonged E. coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS) inflammatory challenge. Following a one week long challenge, six week old piglets fed a lower ω-6: ω-3 ratio had increased protein deposition rates, increased liver protein synthesis rates and increased average daily weight gains relative to those pigs consuming a diet with a higher ω-6: ω-3 FA ratio when feed intakes were similar. Protein synthesis was unaffected by the presence of an LPS induced inflammatory challenge. Overall, reducing the ω-6:ω-3 FA ratio improves the efficiency by which piglets can utilize nutrients for growth, regardless of the presence of an inflammatory challenge.