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Volume 46, Number 3, June 2013

Protein enrichment and digestion improvement of napiergrass and pangolagrass with solid-state fermentation 

Pang-Kuei Hsu, Ching-Piao Liu, Li-Yun Liu, Cheng-Hsiung Chang, Shang-Shyng Yang

Received: January 18, 2012    Revised: April 2, 2012    Accepted: April 10, 2012   


Corresponding author:

Department of Food Science, China University of Science and Technology, Taipei 11581, Taiwan
Department of Biochemical Science and Technology, National Taiwan University, Taipei 10617, Taiwan
Corresponding author. Department of Food Science, China University of Science and Technology, Taipei 11581, Taiwan. 


Background and purpose: 

Napiergrass (Pennisetum purpureum Schumacher) and pangolagrass (Digitaria decumbens Stent) are two major forage grasses for cow feeding. They possess high yields and high regeneration properties. Inoculation of cellulolytic microbes on herbage could enhance the protein content of herbage and promote digestibility in chickens. 



Cellulolytic microbes were isolated from various sources and cultivated on napiergrass and pangolagrass with solid-state fermentation for protein enrichment and in vitro digestion improvement.The fermented napiergrass and pangolagrass were used as the main protein source in chicken diets to assess the feasibility for non-ruminants feed. 



After a 42-day fermentation period, napiergrass showed higher protein contents (13.4–13.9%) than those of pangolagrass(11.1–11.7%). The in vitro digestibility of pangolagrass increased from 5.29% to 20.4%, whereas that of napiergrass increased from 5.29% to 19.0%. The average feed conversion efficiencies of chickens were close to the traditional fodder using corn as the main ingredient. 



Inoculation of appropriate cellulolytic microbes to enrich protein content and improve in vitro digestibility of herbage with solid-state fermentation for chicken feed is the prospective technique for agriculture, animal husbandry, and substantial management. 


Key words:

Cellulose, In vitro digestion, Napiergrass, Pangolagrass, Protein enrichment, Solid-state fermentation