Essential amino acid most likely to be deficient in livestock feeds.
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Essential amino acid most likely to be deficient after lysine in commonly used livestock feeds.
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A valuable and practical alternative to dry Lysine.
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Essential amino acid that tends to be deficient in piglet feeds, especially when primarily composed of corn.
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An essential amino acid for optimal milk production in dairy cows.
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Essential amino acid that tends to be deficient in poultry feeds, especially when primarily composed of corn.
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Amino Acid Overview

Of the 22 amino acids [AA] that are used by the animal’s body for protein synthesis and tissue renewal, 10 are considered essential [indispensable: essential amino acids; EAA]. The essentiality of an AA is defined by whether or not the animal is able to synthesize the key AA of interest at all, or at a rate that is sufficient to meet its needs [requirements] for normal metabolic processes, growth and production. On the flipside, non-essential amino acids [NEAA] are those AAs that the animal can synthesize at a rate that supports normal metabolic processes, growth and production. These amino acids can be synthesized from other non-EAAs and/or EAAs via the process of transamination. Because the animal is unable to adequately synthesize EAAs and EAAs can be irreversibly transformed into non-EAAs, EAAs must be supplied by some dietary source either from intact protein or in free-form [commercially-available AAs].

In order to maximize the genetic potential of a given livestock species [growth, feed conversion, muscle yield, reproductive performance, etc.], AAs must be provided in the correct quantities and balance. This is often referred to as the “ideal protein concept” or the “Barrel-Stave concept”. The Ideal Protein and Barrel-Stave concepts simply state that there is an order of limitation / relationship between the levels of EAAs. Nutritionally, if the amount of growth rate is dictated by the amount of the first limiting amino acid [ex. Lysine], then all EAAs present in the diet [assuming each is in excess of the animal’s requirement] can only be utilized to the extent that the first limiting AA meets the requirement of the animal. Think of this as a bottleneck or regulator. Once the need for the first EAA is met, then the second, third, etc. must be met in order for the animal to optimize its growth response. Once the requirement for EAAs and NEAAs is met, all other AAs that are supplied in excess of the limiting AAs will be broken down [catabolized] into a carbon chain that is used for energy and a number of nitrogenous compounds that are then excreted in to the environment [i.e. free ammonia, urea (in mammals) or uric acid (in birds)]. Since excess AAs are not stored by the body, the ultimate goal is to meet the animal’s AA requirements for production, while reducing the amount of nitrogen that is excreted in to the environment.

As mentioned above, AAs can be added to a diet as intact protein or in free form [i.e. commercially-available AAs]. Once the AA requirements for a particular livestock at a given stage of production are established, commercially-available AAs can be supplemented into diets as a way of meeting the specific requirement of those AAs. This approach not only minimizes excess dietary protein and N excretion in to the environment, which would happen if intact protein sources were used to meet a specific AA requirement, but also the cost of the diet as the level of expensive, protein-rich ingredients is reduced in the dietary formulation.

Ajinomoto Animal Nutrition North America, Inc’s parent company, Ajinomoto, has over 100 years experience in the research, development and application of crystalline AAs in monogastric nutrition. Using fermentation technology, L-Lysine mono-hydrochloride, Liquid L-Lysine, L-Threonine, L-Tryptophan, L-Valine and L-Isoleucine are economically and environmentally sound options for today’s animal agriculture and companion animal nutrition programs.