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Heat stress (HS) and its abatement in livestock has gained substantial attention due to the increased number and severity of climate disruptions. In response to elevated environmental temperatures, pigs experience a reduction in feed intake and altered metabolism that contributes to poor growth and increased disease susceptibility (Johnson and Baumgard, 2018). Mitigation of HS responses may include precision management (Santos et al., 2018), dietary intervention (Mayorga et al., 2018a, 2018b) and infusion of thermotolerant genetics (Gourdine et al., 2019). In this issue, behavior and growth responses were measured in piglets exposed to early life HS or in utero HS (Maskal et al., 2020; Robbins et al., 2020). Results shed new light on the physiological consequences of thermal stress.

Early life thermal stress can have long-term impacts on piglets

Credit: Journal of Animal Science, Volume 98, Issue 12, December 2020, skaa351, doi.org/10.1093/jas/skaa351

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Publisher: American Society of Animal Science

Rights: Name must appear as a credit whenever the image is used - Journal of Animal Science, Volume 98, Issue 12, December 2020, skaa351, https://doi.org/10.1093/jas/skaa351

Description: Heat stress (HS) and its abatement in livestock has gained substantial attention due to the increased number and severity of climate disruptions. In response to elevated environmental temperatures, pigs experience a reduction in feed intake and altered metabolism that contributes to poor growth and increased disease susceptibility (Johnson and Baumgard, 2018). Mitigation of HS responses may include precision management (Santos et al., 2018), dietary intervention (Mayorga et al., 2018a, 2018b) and infusion of thermotolerant genetics (Gourdine et al., 2019). In this issue, behavior and growth responses were measured in piglets exposed to early life HS or in utero HS (Maskal et al., 2020; Robbins et al., 2020). Results shed new light on the physiological consequences of thermal stress.

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