Humic and Fulvic acid research on animals - SK-003

Preferred Disciplines: Agriculture (Animal Science, Food Science, Nutritional Sciences) – Open to Masters, PhDs or Post-Docs
Project length: 1 or 2 - 6 month units
Desired start date: As soon as possible
Location: Regina, SK
No. of Positions: 1
Preferences: N/A
Company: IQ Micro Formulators Inc.

About Company:

IQ Micro Formulators Inc. is solely a custom formulation company that provides customized macro and micro nutrient formulations based on your soil testing and tissue sampling results. We work closely with crop growers and their agronomist to develop customized hydroponic solutions that is specific to the crops grown and their soil’s need(s). The customized formulations are formulated to add value to the foliar crop input needs of farmers. By utilizing the plant’s unique ‘blue print for growth‘, our liquid formulations will provide the land and the crop with the right amount of nutrients it needs to enhance crop growth. We custom blend high quality products because we understand formulating & the chemistry of nutrient interactions.

Project Description:

Natural and organic bioactive compounds are very compatible with animals and human metabolic systems because they share evolutionary pathways in time and space. We are seeking to carry out a research with the objective to determine the effects of Humic plus (an organic humic and Fulvic acid product) on performance and serum metabolites concentrations of beef steers.

The main purpose of this research is to provide evidence that indicates that dietary humic plus increases body weight gain in both steers and heifers and sustained serum hemoglobin concentrations in steers.

Humic Acid is “a mixture of variable and indefinite composition of dark organic substances, which when mixed with acid, of a dilute alkali extract from a soil, form precipitates.”  Humic acids are a mixture of weak aromatic (carbon rings) and aliphatic (carbon chains) organic acids. These organic acids are soluble in water under alkaline form, but are not soluble in acid form. Humic acids have several types of humic substances that are precipitated from aqueous solution under acidic condition (pH < 2). Humic acid is responsible for the biodegradation of several substances and formation of organic acids that are beneficial for soil and these include aliphatic compounds and aromatic macromolecules with peptides, the amino group as well as acids.

Fulvic Acid is “a mixture of organic substances remaining in solution (stays in the water) upon acidification of a dilute alkali extract from soil.”  Fulvic acids (FAs) are a mixture of weak aromatic (carbon rings) and aliphatic (carbon chains) organic acids. These organic acids are soluble in water at acidic, neutral and alkaline pH. The molecular weights (MWs) of fulvic acids are less than humic acids. The MWs of fulvic acids range from about 1,000 to 10,000. Fulvic acids are chemically reactive because of oxygen contents that are double in amount than humic acids. The low MW of Fulvic acid helps in easier penetration. Because of this, it easily penetrates into mitochondria and helps in growth. Besides this, it also easily penetrates through cell membranes, which helps in absorption of nutrients. Because of this, fulvic acid is highly efficient when applied as a root drench or foliar spray.

Background and required skills

Research Objectives/Sub-Objectives:

  • Determine the effects of Humic plus (an organic humic and Fulvic acid product) on performance and serum metabolites concentrations of beef steers

Methodology:

  • We are open to any research set-up but the minimum requirement will be about Fifty six (56) crossbred heifers with average body weight of 400 kg and thirty (30) crossbred steers (average body weight 900 kg.  These two groups will allotted randomly by initial body weight and sex into two groups and fed diets containing 0 (Control) and 4.0% humic plus for 49 days respectively. There will be 51 cattle in the Control group and 35 in the treated group. Steers and heifers will be weighed on day 0 and 49, and blood samples will be drawn from 7 steers and 8 heifers prior to initiating the study (day 0) and on day 49. All performance and serum metabolites concentrations data will be subjected to the analysis of variance using the General Linear Models procedures of the Statistical Analysis System (SAS). No pregnant cattle will be used in this research in other not to skew the result

Expertise and Skills Needed:

  • Experience in a laboratory setting
  • Statistical Analysis
  • Literature research skills

For more info or to apply to this applied research position, please

  1. Check your eligibility and find more information about open projects.
  2. Complete this webform. You will be asked to upload your CV. Remember to indicate the title of the project(s) you are interested in and obtain your professor’s approval to proceed!
  3. If interested in this position, Interested students need to get the approval from their supervisor and send CV's to Iman Yahyaie at iyahyaie@mitacs.ca
Program: