Lysine supplementation of cereal grain-plant protein based diets has been widely used in pigs and in poultry. It has generally led to about a two percentage point decrease in dietary crude protein, which results in a 17-22% reduction in nitrogen excretion (Gatel and Grosjean, 1992; Henry and Dourmad, 1992; Van der Honing et al., 1993; Cromwell, 1994; Gatel, 1994). A further reduction in nitrogen excretion was obtained when the crude protein level was reduced four percentage points and the diets were supplemented with three or four of the following amino acids: lysine, threonine, tryptophan or methionine (Kephart and Sherritt, 1990; Bridges et al., 1995; Kerr and Easter, 1995; Carter et al., 1996).
Nonn and Jeroch (2000) reduced the protein content of a cereal based diet by about 4% and they added eight amino acids, lysine, methionine, threonine, tryptophan, leucine, isoleucine, histidine and valine and found 38.5% reduction in N excretion at a similar rate of gain in control and amino acid-supplemented animals. Reductions in total nitrogen excretion ranged from 28% to 40%, and most of the decrease was in urinary nitrogen excretion (Table 24.3). This was similar to results of studies obtained by Bridges (1995) (see Table 24.2).
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