Microbial and chemical composition of liquid-associated bacteria in goats' rumen and fermenters

L. Abecia*, E. C. Soto, E. Ramos-Morales, E. Molina-Alcaide

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


This study was undertaken to investigate the relationship between chemical composition and microbial profile of rumen liquid-associated bacteria (LAB) in vivo (Murciano-Granadina goats) and in a rumen simulation system (single-flow continuous-culture fermenters). To achieve this aim, analyses of purine bases along with some molecular techniques (quantitative PCR to assess abundance and DGGE to identify biodiversity and bacterial profile) were carried out. A control diet (AHC) based on alfalfa hay (AH) and concentrate (C) in a 1:1 ratio and two experimental diets (AHCBI and AHCBII), in which concentrate was partially replaced with multinutrient blocks, were used. Diets AHCBI and AHCBII included multinutrient blocks differing in the relative amount of two-stage olive cake and the source of protein (sunflower meal vs. fava beans). We aimed to investigate the effect of these blocks on rumen microbiota to evaluate their potential as safe substitutes of cereal-based concentrates. Similar patterns of response to diet were found for chemical composition, microbial abundances and diversity in LAB isolated from goat's rumen and fermenters. Whereas bacterial density (log10 gene copies/g FM: 11.6 and 9.4 for bacteria and methanogens, respectively, in rumen) and diversity indexes (Shannon index: 3.6) were not affected by diet, DGGE analyses showed that bacterial community profile was affected. The cluster analysis suggested differences in bacterial profile between LAB pellets isolated from the rumen of goat and fermenters. A relationship between chemical composition and bacterial community composition in LAB pellets seems to exist. Changes in the former were reflected in the bacterial community profile. Further research is needed to clarify the relationship between chemical and microbial composition of ruminal bacterial pellets with diets of different quality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1001-1012
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition
Issue number5
Early online date27 Jan 2014
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014

Bibliographical note

Research funding
Junta de Andalucía. Grant Numbers: CAO-003, P07-RNM-2746, AGL2011-22628

This research was supported by Junta de Andalucía (Projects CAO-003, P07-RNM-2746) and AGL2011-22628. Drs. L. Abecia and E. Ramos-Morales acknowledge research contracts JAE-Doc from CSIC. E.C Soto acknowledges the I3P scholarship from CSIC. Thanks to J. Fernández, V. Toledano and I. Jimenez for technical assistance and to Aceites Sierra Sur for providing us with crude two-stage olive cake.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Blackwell Verlag GmbH.


  • Bacterial diversity
  • Caprine
  • Chemical composition
  • Fermenters
  • Liquid-associated bacteria
  • Microbial abundances


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