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A New Phytase Enzyme to Benefit the Environment,
Natural Resources, and Nutrition

Xingen Lei, Animal ScienceFood-producing animals such as swine, poultry, and pre-ruminant calves do not have the necessary enzyme in their gastrointestinal tracts that would enable them to digest phytate-phosphorus, the major form of phosphorus in plant feeds. Consequently, the unutilized feed phosphorus ends up in manure, causing environmental pollution. Many areas such as Chesapeake Bay and Onslow, North Carolina, suffer from environmental problems caused by this kind of animal waste.

At the same time, inorganic phosphorus is supplemented in diets for these simple-stomached animals to meet their nutrient requirements. This supplementation represents the third largest expense of animal diet. A nonrenewable natural resource, the easily accessible inorganic phosphorus deposit on earth will be exhausted in approximately 80 years at current extraction and usage rate.

 

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