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Effect of betaine supplementation on rumen microbiome of mid-lactating Holstein dairy cows.

H. C. Hung



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Effect of betaine supplementation on rumen microbiome of mid-lactating Holstein dairy cows.
H. C. Hung*1, C. Y. Tsai1, J. E. Williams1, G. E. Chibisa1, W. J. Price2, M. A. McGuire1, M. Chahine1,3, P. Rezamand1. 1Department of Animal and Veterinary Science, University of Idaho Moscow, ID, 2Statistical Programs, College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, University of Idaho Moscow, ID, 3Twin Falls Research and Extension Center, University of Idaho Twin Falls, ID.

The effect of betaine on rumen fermentation stems from its action as a source of available ruminal nitrogen or methyl groups which may affect bacterial communities. Thus, we hypothesized that betaine supplementation affects rumen microbiome. Three rumen-cannulated Holstein dairy cows were used in a 3 � 3 Latin square design with 3 8-d periods (1 d for bag placement and ruminal fluid collection, and 7 d for washout). Three treatments of betaine at 0, 100, and 200 g were placed into Dacron bags (each bag contain 0, 100 or 200 g) which were put into the rumen triplicate at each time point (0, 1, 1.5, 2, 3, 6, 12, and 24 h). All the bags were removed at time point 24 h for organic matter analysis. Ruminal fluid from time points 0, 3, 6, 12, and 24 h was collected for pH and microbiome analysis. The relative abundance of taxa were analyzed using a generalized linear mixed model. Ruminal pH, richness, Simpson's evenness, Shannon diversity index, and Simpson diversity index were analyzed using a linear mixed model. R was used for permutational multivariate analysis using a Bray-Curtis dissimilarity matrix. Signficance was declared at P < 0.05. Results revealed that betaine supplementation decreased ruminal pH, Simpson's evenness, and all diversity indices after time 0, but no treatment � time point interactions were observed. The mean relative abundance from overall 24 h sampling time points of Prevotella 1 and Streptococcus increased with 200 g betaine while the relative abundance of Ruminococcaceae decreased. Over the 24 h, the relative abundance of Prevotella 1 (17.4 vs 38.17% for 0 and 24 h, respectively) increased with 200 g betaine. Only with 200 g betaine, the time point effect was observed to increase the relative abundance of Streptococcus (treatment � time point interaction). Permutational multivariate analysis showed that the variance of animal and treatment affected β diversity. Overall, betaine supplementation decreased ruminal pH, caused the bacterial taxa to shift toward starch utilizing bacteria (e.g., Prevotella) rather than cellulolytic bacteria (Ruminococcaceae), and led to decreased microbial diversity.

Keywords: betaine, ruminal pH, ruminal microbiome.