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Open Access Research article

Effect of L-arginine on HSP70 expression in liver in weanling piglets

Xin Wu12, Chunyan Xie1, Yulong Yin123*, Fengna Li1, Tiejun Li1, Ruilin Huang1, Zheng Ruan2 and Zeyuan Deng2

Author Affiliations

1 Scientific Observing and Experimental Station of Animal Nutrition and Feed Science in South-Central, Ministry of Agriculture, Hunan Provincial Engineering Research Center of Healthy Livestock, Key Laboratory of Agro-ecological Processes in Subtropical Region, Institute of Subtropical Agriculture, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changsha, Hunan, 410125, China

2 State Key Laboratory of Food Science and Technology and College, Nanchang University, Nanchang, 330031, China

3 Institute of Subtropical Agriculture, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Changsha, Hunan, 410125, China

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BMC Veterinary Research 2013, 9:63  doi:10.1186/1746-6148-9-63

Published: 4 April 2013



This study was conducted to evaluate the effects of L-arginine (Arg) on photomicrographs and HSP70 expression in the liver of weanling piglets. Twelve healthy Landrace × Yorkshire piglets that had been weaned at 21 d (average body weight 5.56 ± 0.51 kg) were randomly divided into a control group and an Arg group (6 g/kg feed). At age 28 d, all of the piglets were slaughtered to obtain liver samples to determine HSP70 expression by real-time PCR, western blot and immunohistochemistry.


The results showed that, compared to control piglets, treatment with Arg decreased inflammatory reactions caused by weaning. The immunohistochemical localization of HSP70 in liver revealed strong expression in the Arg group. Arg increased HSP70 mRNA and HSP70 expression in the liver (P < 0.05).


These findings suggest that dietary supplementation with Arg could maintain liver health by inducing HSP70 expression in weanling piglets.

L-arginine; Liver; HSP70; Weanling piglets