The objective was to evaluate different nutritional management approaches to reduce the size of the Sinclair miniature swine (SMS), while maintaining normal physiology and health status as part of a SMS downsizing program. The food regimen used for the SMS has not been optimized for growth management and allows full body weight development while maintaining 20-30% body fat, even during the acute growth phase.
Two diets were evaluated: Sinclair S-9 and Purina 5081. Sinclair S-9 diet is used in the SMS production (19% protein, 3.7% fiber, 3.2 Kcal/g). Purina 5081 diet is commercially available across the U.S. (14% protein, 14% fiber, 2.4 Kcal/g). Groups were: Control (S-9; regular daily regimen amount, n= 7); G1 (5081, 25% reduction, n= 6); G2 (S-9; 20% reduction, n= 7). Physical exams, body condition scores (BCS), body weights (BW), and behavioral assessments were performed weekly. Clinical pathology and radiographs were taken at specified timepoints. There has been a significant (p<0.001) reduction in body weight. Weights from control animals (Purina CU S-9) (28.6 ± 3.8 kg) were reduced in G1 and G2 animals by -38.0%, (16.2 ±2.0 kg)and-14.9% (22.6 ±3.3 kg) , respectively.
The BCS for Control, G1 and G2 were 3.1, 2.7,2.9, respectively. The nutritional approach resulted in SMS downsizing while maintaining adequate BCS. Overall, all clinical chemistry, hematology, and coagulation data were within the normal limits established for the SMS for all groups at all time points. Advantages in overall refinement and reduction of test article could have a savings impact as well as reducing stress on handlers and animals.