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The presence of xylanases as a feed additive induces modifications of the luminal and the tissue-associated microbial population in the intestinal tract of both broilers and piglets.
Cultivation of intestinal bacteria from xylanase treated animals on selective media consistently showed a reduction of enterobacteria and Gram-positive cocci and (less easily reproducible) an increase in the number of lactobacilli.
The response of different species within the genus Lactobacillus to dietary xylanase supplementation varies in intensity. The metabolic activity of L. reuteri in particular seems to be highly stimulated.
Dietary xylanase supplementation stimulates the development of a bacterial population in the small intestine that is capable of utilising pentosans and presumably also other NSP for energy generation.