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Open AccessArticle

Inflammatory Correlated Response in Two Lines of Rabbit Selected Divergently for Litter Size Environmental Variability

1
Institute for Animal Science and Technology, Universitat Politècnica de València, P.O. Box 22012, 46022 València, Spain
2
Departamento de Tecnología Agroalimentaria, Universidad Miguel Hernández de Elche, Ctra de Beniel km 3.2, 03312 Orihuela, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Animals 2020, 10(9), 1540; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10091540
Received: 20 July 2020 / Revised: 27 August 2020 / Accepted: 30 August 2020 / Published: 1 September 2020
Animal welfare is a priority objective for the livestock industry. Litter size environmental variability has been related to environmental sensitivity. A divergent selection experiment for environmental variance of litter size variance was carried out successfully in rabbits over thirteen generations. The low line showed a lower inflammatory response and susceptibility to infectious disorders than the high line. In conclusion, the decrease of environmental sensitivity seems to increase the adaptation of the animal to the environment, and thus, its welfare.
A divergent selection experiment for environmental variance of litter size variance was carried out in rabbits over thirteen generations. The aim of this study was to evaluate the inflammatory response in the two lines of the experiment, in order to analyse the effect of selection on susceptibility to diseases after challenging to stressful situations, such as 24 h after the first delivery. A total of 78 females were used in this study, 39 from each line. The line selected for litter size heterogeneity (the high line) showed lower white blood leukocyte count (WBC; −0.87 × 103/µL), lower percentage of basophils (−0.11%), higher concentration of TNF-α (+13.8 pg/mL), and greater concentration of CRP (+38.1 µg/mL) than the line selected for litter size homogeneity (the low line). The high line had also higher concentrations of bilirubin, cholesterol, gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) compared to the low line (difference between lines were +0.08 µmol/L, +0.14 µmol/L, +0.35 U/L and +2.4 U/L, respectively). The high line showed higher inflammatory response than the low line, in accordance with a larger susceptibility to infectious disorders. In conclusion, the line selected to increase litter size environmental variability seems to have poor capacity coping with environmental stressors. Therefore, selection for litter size environmental variability can be a useful way to improve animal welfare. View Full-Text
Keywords: C-reactive protein; divergent selection response; rabbits; susceptibility to diseases; welfare C-reactive protein; divergent selection response; rabbits; susceptibility to diseases; welfare
MDPI and ACS Style

Beloumi, D.; Blasco, A.; Muelas, R.; Santacreu, M.A.; García, M.d.l.L.; Argente, M.-J. Inflammatory Correlated Response in Two Lines of Rabbit Selected Divergently for Litter Size Environmental Variability. Animals 2020, 10, 1540.

AMA Style

Beloumi D, Blasco A, Muelas R, Santacreu MA, García MdlL, Argente M-J. Inflammatory Correlated Response in Two Lines of Rabbit Selected Divergently for Litter Size Environmental Variability. Animals. 2020; 10(9):1540.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Beloumi, Dhekra; Blasco, Agustín; Muelas, Raquel; Santacreu, María A.; García, María d.l.L.; Argente, María-José. 2020. "Inflammatory Correlated Response in Two Lines of Rabbit Selected Divergently for Litter Size Environmental Variability" Animals 10, no. 9: 1540.

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