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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Influence of bacitracin on microbial functions in the gastrointestinal tract of horses.

This study investigated the influence of zinc bacitracin on the intestinal flora of horses. The functionally active intestinal flora was examined in 6 horses during treatment with zinc bacitracin. Utilising gas chromatography, spectrophotometry, gel electrophoresis and paper chromatography, samples were analysed on biochemical markers reflecting the action of parts of the intestinal flora. The following 5 flora-related functions were studied in faecal samples and intestinal samples from different sections of the hindgut: conversion of cholesterol to coprostanol and of bilirubin to urobilinogens, degradation of mucin and of beta-aspartylglycine and inactivation of tryptic activity. Conversion to coprostanol, conversion to urobilinogens and degradation of mucin were affected by treatment of zinc bacitracin and conversion to coprostanol was most sensitive. All functions were normalised in a short time, in contrast to man and rats. Differences in environmental exposures are probably the reason for a more rapid normalisation of the intestinal flora functions in horses.[1]


  1. Influence of bacitracin on microbial functions in the gastrointestinal tract of horses. Collinder, E., Berge, G.N., Grønvold, B., Lindholm, A., Midtved, T., Norin, E. Equine Vet. J. (2000) [Pubmed]
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