Authors: Giuseppe Tardiolo, Orazio Romeo, Alessandro Zumbo, Marco Di Marsico, Anna Maria Sutera, Riccardo Aiese Cigliano, Andreu Paytuví  and Enrico D’Alessandro


  • Department of Veterinary Sciences, University of Messina, Polo Universitario dell’Annunziata, Via Palatucci snc, 98168 Messina, Italy
  • Department of Chemical, Biological, Pharmaceutical and Environmental Sciences, University of Messina, Viale Ferdinando Stagno d’Alcontres 31, 98166 Messina, Italy
  • Sequentia Biotech SL, Carrer del Dr. Trueta 179, 08005 Barcelona, Spain

Publication: MDPI

Date: February, 2023

Link: Characterization of the Nero Siciliano Pig Fecal Microbiota after a Liquid Whey-Supplemented Diet


The utilization of dairy by-products as animal feed, especially in swine production, is a strategy to provide functional ingredients to improve gut health. This study explored the potential effect of a liquid whey-supplemented diet on the fecal microbiota of eleven pigs belonging to the Nero Siciliano breed. Five pigs were assigned to the control group and fed with a standard formulation feed, whereas six pigs were assigned to the experimental group and fed with the same feed supplemented with liquid whey. Fecal samples were collected from each individual before the experimental diet (T0), and one (T1) and two (T2) months after the beginning of the co-feed supplementation. Taxonomic analysis, based on the V3–V4 region of the bacterial 16S rRNA, showed that pig feces were populated by a complex microbial community with a remarkable abundance of FirmicutesBacteroidetes, and Spirochaetes phyla and PrevotellaLactobacillusClostridium, and Treponema genera. Alpha and beta diversity values suggested that the experimental diet did not significantly affect the overall fecal microbiota diversity. However, analysis of abundance at different time points revealed significant variation in several bacterial genera, suggesting that the experimental diet potentially affected some genera of the microbial community.