Two 24 h in vitro batch culture experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of fumarate addition (10 mmol L-1) on the ruminal fermentation parameters of selected medicinal herbs, and the effects of different doses of fumarate (0, 10, or 30 mmol L-1) on ruminal metabolism of organic acids when a high-concentrate diet (meadow hay and barley grain, 400/600, w/w) was supplemented with a mix of medicinal herbs (Artemisia absinthium L., Melissa officinalis L., Malva sylvestris L., Matricaria chamomilla L., Plantago lanceolata L., Foeniculum vulgare Mill., and Althaea officinalis L.). Depending on the concentration, fumarate treatment decreased methane production (by 10-11%) and increased propionate proportions (by 5-13%) with high-concentrate diets. The organic acid (fumaric, succinic, malic, and lactic acid) concentrations in the batch culture were measured at intervals of 0, 4, 6, 12, and 24 h. The time and organic acid concentrations with 10 mmol L-1 fumarate were well correlated (R2 = 0.846). The amount of succinate was accumulated and metabolized more slowly than that of fumarate (>24 h). The addition of fumarate and a herb mix could positively influence in vitro ruminal fermentation parameters of high-concentrate diets by increasing the levels of propionate and succinate as well as the pH, and by decreasing of methane emissions.
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