Aquafeed Vol 14 Issue 3 2022

Page 60


Antioxidant technology helps optimize feed costs and performance Dr. Stephanie Ladirat, NUQO© Every day, animals face various kinds of stress: changes in diet or raw material quality, hot temperature, diseases, handling and manipulations, etc. Stress triggers the production of free reactive radicals in cells that oxidize lipids or proteins. These free radicals are normally regulated but under stress conditions, free radicals’ level can increase dramatically and results in significant damage to cell structures and, to some extent, affect the performance and/or health of the animal, including fish and shrimp species.

A strategic approach of natural antioxidants for aquaculture In order to avoid negative effects from oxidative stress, cells contain naturally present antioxidant mechanisms. In an ideal situation, a balance between oxidation and antioxidant mechanisms is established safeguarding cell integrity and function. Antioxidant mechanisms mitigate cell oxidative stress by neutralizing reactive radicals. In highly productive animals or during stressful periods, additional components with antioxidant capacity are often provided on top of the naturally present antioxidant mechanisms in the body to support the health of animals. Many ingredients have shown interesting antioxidant effects. More precisely, several groups of molecules have shown an effect to help balance oxidation and antioxidant mechanisms in the organism. Among these groups, different types of natural ingredients containing polyphenols have shown antioxidant effects. Polyphenols are natural compounds present in plants with numerous biological activities. Several studies have explored the properties of polyphenols in antiinflammation and oxidation, the mechanisms involved in signaling pathways activated upon oxidative stress,

as well as the possible roles of polyphenols in specific disorders. Polyphenols are present in herbs, spices, stems, flowers, etc. and even seaweeds. They are the secondary metabolites of plants involved in the defensive system. It is difficult to determine the best source of natural antioxidants. Environmental factors, such as the type of the soil, exposure to light, rainfall, culture methods, and fruit yield per tree, have a strong impact on final concentration and activity. In vitro methods are a good preliminary approach to evaluating antioxidants, nevertheless, in vivo trials are necessary to validate solutions. The scientific approach to determine the

Figure 1. Antioxidant activity and variability among sources.

Aquafeed: Advances in Processing & Formulation Vol 14 Issue 3 2022

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