Abstract # 13397 Poster # 147:

Scheduled for Friday, August 23, 2019 06:00 PM-08:00 PM: (Alumni Lounge) Poster Presentation


DIET AND DIGESTION IN CAPTIVE COMMON MARMOSETS (CALLITHRIX JACHUS): HEALTH AND MANAGEMENT IMPLICATIONS

M. L. Power1, J. Adams2, K. Solonika3, R. J. Colman3,5, C. N. Ross2,4 and S. D. Tardif2
1Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, PO Box 37012 MRC 5503, Washington, DC 20013, USA, 2Southwest National Primate Research Center, 3Wisconsin National Primate Research Center, 4Texas A&M University - San Antonio, 5University of Wisconsin
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     Chronic lymphocytic enteritis (CLE), inflammation of the intestinal tract leading to nutrient malabsorption, is a major source of morbidity in captive common marmosets (Callithrix jacchus). This study investigated digestive efficiency in 81 outwardly healthy adult marmosets fed three diets to examine the extent of subclinical CLE and explore dietary effects. Two sequential 4-day digestion trials were conducted. All uneaten food and feces was collected. Energy content of food and feces was determined using bomb calorimetry, enabling calculation of apparent digestibility of energy (ADE). Fecal fat was assayed. Average age was 3.5±0.2 years; mean body mass was 432.5±8.6g. Body mass was positively correlated with ADE (r=0.546; p < 0.001). Age was negatively associated with ADE (r=-0.227; p=0.001). Fecal fat was positively correlated with age (r=0.445, p<0.001) and negatively correlated with body mass (r=-0.413; p<0.001). Age and body mass were not associated. Males and females did not differ in any parameter. Fecal fat ranged from 1% to over 20% and was negatively correlated with ADE (r=-0.739; p< 0.001). Individuals with low ADE and high fecal fat existed on all three diets, however, 50% of marmosets on one diet had fecal fat above 10% compared to 20% and 7% of marmosets on the other diets. Animals with poor digestive efficiency had higher fecal fat, consistent with lipid malabsorption, and were older and smaller. Diet may play a role.