About this Research Topic
In recent years, natural products have become of great importance as replacement additives to antibiotics, that can be used as growth promoting agents. There is a social pressure to animal production industries to improve animal production performances, minimize economic losses and ensuring the safety of products for human consumption. In the future, natural feed additives have the potential to occupy an important position in animal feeding and could be designated as essential for environmentally friendly production.
The potential negative consequences of the removal of antibiotics as growth promoters on gut health and growth performance, have increased the interest for finding alternatives to reduce the prevalence of bacterial infections, improve the quality of food products and animal performance by promoting gut health.
In general, the term “gut health” represents interaction between the microbiome, the intestinal wall barrier and physiological and immune components, which allow different animals to cope with internal and external stressors.
Due to current restrictions on the use of antibiotics particularly as feed additives, the objective of this research topic are novel research results focused on the use of herbs, essential oils, prebiotics and probiotics as alternative feed additives in animal nutrition. Natural additives in animal feed are able to improve productivity and performance by enhancing digestibility, maintaining and stabilizing beneficial microflora in the gut and finally can improve quality of animal products and positively influence the environment.
Natural feed additives such as prebiotics, beneficial microorganisms, bacteriocins, phytogenic compounds and organic acids have the potential to become a new research area for human or animal nutrition and health, and can satisfy the increasing consumer demand for natural substances. Since they are represented as novel valuable substances, their research is an ongoing discipline. Moreover, pharmacokinetics and mechanism of action of phytogenic bioactive compounds are discussed and represent a novel approach.
Highly advanced research (including Original Research, Perspectives, Mini Reviews, Commentaries and Opinion papers) on these fields are welcomed in this Research Topic (but are not limited):
• Herbal feed additives for functional foods
• Modes of action and pharmacokinetics (metabolism, bioavailability, distribution, antimicrobial activity, antioxidant activity, anti-inflammatory activity)
• Phyto-additives – current and future
Keywords: nutraceuticals, phytochemicals, probiotics, prebiotics, bacteriocins, gut health, metabolism, oxidative stress, immunity, performance
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.