Deciphering ecological interactions in the ruminant gastrointestinal tract microbiota that affect methane formation and the efficacy of mitigation strategies

PI: Hilario Mantovani

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Mantovani is an assistant professor of animal and dairy sciences at UW–Madison. He specializes in rumen microbial physiology. Mantovani’s position is funded by the Dairy Innovation Hub.

This project aims to investigate a pressing question regarding the mechanisms by which methane inhibitors affect individual populations of methane producing bacterium and the overall ruminal fermentation. Mantovani’s lab hypothesizes that methane producing bacterium in the ruminant gastrointestinal tract vary in their contributions to total methane formation, and that there are predictable changes in the microbial community structure that result in lower green house gas emissions. Findings from this study can lead to the development of novel and effective approaches to reduce enteric methane emissions in dairy and beef cattle operations and provide an analytical platform to optimize the in vivo dosage of anti-methanogenic inhibitors.

Steve Ricke