The colorimetric acetyl bromide soluble lignin (ABSL) procedure was modified to use for analyzing intact alfalfa and its cell wall fractions for both lignin and total phenolic substances. A purified lignin extracted from alfalfa (native lignin) was used as a standard. Soluble phenolic compounds present in alfalfa did not inhibit cellulose digestion in vitro, because cell wall fractions had the same or slightly lower cellulose digestibility values than did the intact forage (intact forage = 46.5%; Morrison's cell walls = 46.4%; NDF = 42.6%; ADF = 48.7%). Disappearance of ABSL from the solid digesta was very high for intact alfalfa (48.5%), presumably reflecting either solubilization or utilization of the phenolics. However, very little ABSL was detected in the liquid fraction, suggesting that the soluble phenolic substances possibly were metabolized or modified by ruminal microorganisms. On the other hand, little, if any, of the ABSL present in the cell wall fractions disappeared after 48 h of fermentation. These data emphasize the resistance of core lignin to microbial degradation in short-term anaerobic fermentations.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Food Science
- Animal Science and Zoology