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Animal Sciences and Industry

Animal Sciences and Industry

Kansas State University
232 Weber Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-8028

785-532-6533

Email: asi@ksu.edu

Water-soluble vitamins

The B-complex vitamins are water-soluble vitamins and are required as co-enzymes in several metabolic processes. The B vitamins added in swine diets are riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, and vitamin B12. In addition, folic acid, pyridoxine, choline, and biotin are included in sow diets due to the influence of these vitamins on reproductive performance.

 

Pantothenic acid

Pantothenic acid is an important component of enzymes involved in the metabolism of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. Pantothenic acid content is variable in grains and oilseeds commonly used in swine diets. Pantothenic acid deficiency causes non-specific signs, such as low growth rate, low intake, rough hair coat, diarrhea, and reproductive failure. A characteristic sign of pantothenic acid deficiency is a gait disorder in the rear legs, which includes tremor, stiffness, and a high-stepping gait called 'goose stepping'.  

Riboflavin

Riboflavin is an essential component of enzymes involved in the metabolism of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. Riboflavin content is typically low in grains and oilseeds commonly used in swine diets. Riboflavin deficiency causes non-specific signs, such as low growth rate, low intake, skin lesions, rough hair coat, diarrhea, and reproductive failure.

Niacin

Niacin is an important component of enzymes involved in many metabolic reactions. Grains commonly used in swine diets contain adequate amounts of niacin, but in a bound form unavailable to pigs. Niacin deficiency is characterized by skin lesions, rough hair coat, hair loss, diarrhea, vomiting, and lesions in the digestive tract.

Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12is an essential component of enzymes involved in several metabolic functions. Feedstuffs of plant origin do not contain vitamin B12, whereas proteins of animal origin are good sources of vitamin B12. Vitamin B12deficiency causes non-specific signs, such as low growth rate, low intake, rough hair coat, incoordination, and reproductive failure. A typical sign of vitamin B12deficiency is anemia.

Folic acid

Folic acid is mainly added to sow diets. Folic acid is involved in the synthesis of essential components for cell development and function. Grains and oilseeds commonly used in swine diets have adequate concentration of folic acid to meet the requirement of growing pigs. Folic acid supplementation in sows is particularly important for adequate development of conceptus and to improve litter size and live born piglets.

Pyridoxin

Pyridoxin is mainly added to sow diets. Pyridoxine is an essential component of enzymes involved in amino acid metabolism. Grains and oilseeds commonly used in swine diets have adequate concentration of pyridoxine to meet the requirement of growing pigs. Pyridoxine supplementation in sows is found to improve litter size and wean-to-estrus interval.

Choline

Choline is mainly added to sow diets. Choline is involved in many essential metabolic functions for cell structure, nervous function, and amino acid metabolism. Choline is present in adequate amounts in grains and oilseeds commonly used in swine diets and pigs are also able to produce choline to meet the requirements. Choline supplementation in sows is found to improve conception rate, farrowing rate, litter size, live born piglets, and weaned piglets.

Biotin

Biotin is mainly added to sow diets. Biotin is an essential component of enzymes involved in the metabolism of protein, carbohydrate, and fat. Grains and oilseeds commonly used in swine diets have adequate concentration of biotin to meet the requirement of growing pigs. Biotin supplementation in sows is found to improve litter size, live born piglets, and weaned piglets, and to enhance hoof soundness.