Dwane B. Tucker - Oct. 19,2012

The effects of mucin secretagogues on mucin synthesis and threonine requirements in small intestine of young Yucatan miniature pigs

Threonine is of great nutritional importance because it is the essential amino acid most utilized by the gastrointestinal tract and as much as 80% of dietary threonine can be extracted during first pass metabolism. Mucus, primarily comprised of threonine-rich mucin protein, forms a layer over the epithelial surface of the gut to protect against pathogens and anti-nutritional factors. Intestinal mucins have a high turnover rate and are not recycled efficiently; continual replenishment of mucins represents a significant use of dietary threonine. If the gut is challenged by pathogens or anti-nutritional factors, then more threonine for mucus synthesis will be required. The goal of my research has been to determine if small intestinal protein synthesis is stimulated when challenged with mucin secretagogues such as fibre, when using both in situ and in vivo piglet models. Furthermore, to determine if threonine availability limits protein synthesis and if threonine requirements change significantly when the gut is challenged.

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