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Methane reduction by quercetin, tannic and salicylic acids: influence of molecular structures on methane formation and fermentation in vitro

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Plant secondary metabolites (PSMs) can potentially reduce ruminal methane formation. However, related to differences in their molecular structures, it is not yet clear what causes an anti-methanogenic effect. In an in vitro system simulating rumen fermentation, we investigated the impact of eight compounds with distinct chemical characteristics (gallic and salicylic acids, tannic acid, catechin, epicatechin, quercetin, rutin, and salicin) when added to a basal feed (maize silage) at a concentration of 12% of the feed dry matter. After 48 h of incubation in buffered rumen fluid, methane production was significantly lowered by quercetin (43%), tannic acid (39%) and salicylic acid (34%) compared to the control (maize silage alone) and without changes in total volatile fatty acid production during fermentation. No other PSM reduced methane formation as compared to control but induced significant differences on total volatile fatty acid production. The observed differences were related to lipophilicity, the presence of double bond and carbonyl group, sugar moieties, and polymerization of the compounds. Our results indicate the importance of distinct molecular structures of PSMs and chemical characteristics for methane lowering properties and volatile fatty acid formation. Further systematic screening studies to establish the structure–function relationship between PSMs and methane reduction are warranted.
TidsskriftScientific Reports
Antal sider11
StatusUdgivet - 25 sep. 2023

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