Priming the Dairy Cow for Lactation: Insights into Metabolism, Immunity, and Performances Related to Strategies for the Optimization of the Transition Period

A special issue of Animals (ISSN 2076-2615). This special issue belongs to the section "Cattle".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 July 2020) | Viewed by 43398

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Guest Editor
Department of Animal Sciences, Food and Nutrition (DIANA), Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Science, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Via Emilia Parmense 84, 29122 Piacenza, Italy
Interests: dairy cows; dairy cattle nutrition and feeding; dairy cattle precision farming; animal physiology; system biology; gene expression; transcriptomics; dairy cow immunology and inflammation; cattle transition period; in vitro tissue culture
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Guest Editor
Department of Animal Sciences, Food and Nutrition (DIANA), Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Science, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Via Emilia Parmense 84, 29122 Piacenza, Italy
Interests: cattle transition period; dairy cow immunology and inflammation; system biology; bioinformatics; gene expression; ruminant physiology; transcriptomics; in vitro cell culture; nutritional and physiological genomics; molecular nutrition

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Around parturition, dairy cows face metabolic and physiologic challenges, which require both homeostatic and homeorhetic mechanisms to accommodate the sudden demands of the mammary gland. At the same time, cows are faced with a dysfunctional immune system and an increased inflammatory state, as a consequence of adaptation from a non-productive period (dry) to the onset of a new lactation for multiparous cows and the first lactation for heifers. The cows’ ability to react to these factors often determines their profitability. Therefore, characterizing and attempting to better address the underlying physiological mechanisms behind their responses will give us the ability to reduce unnecessary losses within a given production system, while maximizing performance and efficiency. To help in this purpose, modern technologies have enabled the measurement of transcriptional changes in genes involved in multiple biochemical pathways across the transition period, enabling a better understanding of the implications of management and nutritional changes on cow health and productivity. Hence, the integration of existing and current knowledge will help refine strategies to optimize the transition period of dairy cows and related management practices.

For this purpose, we invite researchers to share their recent findings on the development of specific nutritional, pharmacological, and management strategies to support metabolic adaptations during the transition period.

Original and review papers are welcome.

Dr. Vincenzo Lopreiato
Dr. Andrea Minuti
Guest Editors

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Keywords

  • transition period
  • dairy cows
  • inflammation
  • immune response
  • health and productivity
  • gene expression
  • negative energy balance

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

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13 pages, 257 KiB  
Article
Influence of Days in Milk and Parity on Milk and Blood Fatty Acid Concentrations, Blood Metabolites and Hormones in Early Lactation Holstein Cows
by Quynh Chau Dang Van, Emilie Knapp, Jean-Luc Hornick and Isabelle Dufrasne
Animals 2020, 10(11), 2081; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10112081 - 10 Nov 2020
Cited by 16 | Viewed by 2277
Abstract
The objective of this paper is to study the influence of physiological factors that affect the energy balance, such as lactation stage and parity, on milk yield and composition, milk and blood fatty acid concentrations, blood metabolites and hormones in healthy early lactation [...] Read more.
The objective of this paper is to study the influence of physiological factors that affect the energy balance, such as lactation stage and parity, on milk yield and composition, milk and blood fatty acid concentrations, blood metabolites and hormones in healthy early lactation cows. Thirty-two Holstein dairy cows from five Belgian commercial farms were followed. The grass silage-based diets fed to cows fell within normal composition ranges typically offered to dairy cows on commercial dairy farms in the region. Milk and blood were sampled at each official milk recording and used for the determination of milk fat and protein, milk and blood fatty acids, blood metabolites and hormones concentrations. The considered period was 7 to 150 days in milk. As lactation progressed, concentrations of milk 18:0 and 18:1c9, as well as blood non-esterified fatty acids and β-hydroxybutyrate, decreased, and those of milk C4–C14, blood cholesterol, triglycerides, insulin and IGF-I increased, agreeing with the extensive mobilization of body reserves in early lactation. Lower concentrations of milk C4–C14 and 16:0 and concomitant higher concentrations of milk 18:0 and 18:1c9 suggest a larger body reserve mobilization in first parity cows compared with greater than or equal to second parity cows. This study confirms that early lactation stage along with parity significantly influence milk fatty acids, such as 18:1, and blood metabolites and hormones, such as NEFA and insulin. Full article
16 pages, 1061 KiB  
Article
Changes of Plasma Fatty Acids in Four Lipid Classes to Understand Energy Metabolism at Different Levels of Non-Esterified Fatty Acid (NEFA) in Dairy Cows
by Rossella Tessari, Michele Berlanda, Massimo Morgante, Tamara Badon, Matteo Gianesella, Elisa Mazzotta, Barbara Contiero and Enrico Fiore
Animals 2020, 10(8), 1410; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10081410 - 13 Aug 2020
Cited by 25 | Viewed by 3787
Abstract
The transition period is a central moment in dairy cows breeding because metabolic disorders may occur in relation to a dramatic increase in energy demand. This research aimed to identify new biomarkers for the diagnosis of hyperketonemia in bovine in early lactation phase [...] Read more.
The transition period is a central moment in dairy cows breeding because metabolic disorders may occur in relation to a dramatic increase in energy demand. This research aimed to identify new biomarkers for the diagnosis of hyperketonemia in bovine in early lactation phase with different value of plasmatic non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA). The profile of plasma fatty acids (FAs) divided into four lipid classes was evaluated using thin layer chromatography and gas chromatographic techniques (TLC-GC). A group of 60 multiparous Holstein–Friesian dairy cows were recruited in the present study. Blood samples were collected from the coccygeal vein and NEFA and the β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) were evaluated. All animals were divided in 2 groups based on NEFA, NEFA0 group had as mean value 0.24 ± 0.12 mEq/L and NEFA1 group had as mean value 0.87 ± 0.23 mEq/L. Plasma FA concentrations were analyzed separately in free fatty acids, cholesterol esters, phospholipids and triglycerides. Six FAs demonstrated a predictive value in the hyperketonemic dairy cows. In the free fatty acid class, the predictive FAs were C14:0 (AUC = 0.77), C18:1 ω 9 (AUC = 0.72), C18:1 ω 7 (AUC = 0.70) and C18:3 ω 3 (AUC = 0.68). In the phospholipids class the predictive parameters were C12:0 (AUC = 0.78) and C8:0 (AUC = 0.73). In cholesterol, esters and triglycerides lipidic classes no FA had a predictive function. Full article
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21 pages, 1826 KiB  
Article
Consequences of Transition Treatments on Fertility and Associated Metabolic Status for Dairy Cows in Early Lactation
by Junnan Ma, Renny J. van Hoeij, Rupert M. Bruckmaier, Akke Kok, Theo J. G. M. Lam, Bas Kemp and Ariette T. M. van Knegsel
Animals 2020, 10(6), 1100; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10061100 - 25 Jun 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 4149
Abstract
This study aimed to (1) investigate effects of reducing postpartum dietary energy level for cows after a 0-d dry period (DP) on resumption of ovarian cyclicity and reproductive performance, (2) relate days open with other reproductive measures, and (3) relate onset of luteal [...] Read more.
This study aimed to (1) investigate effects of reducing postpartum dietary energy level for cows after a 0-d dry period (DP) on resumption of ovarian cyclicity and reproductive performance, (2) relate days open with other reproductive measures, and (3) relate onset of luteal activity (OLA) and days open with metabolic status in early lactation. Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 transition treatments: no DP and low postpartum dietary energy level from 22 days in milk( DIM )onwards (0-d DP (LOW)) (n = 42), no DP and standard postpartum dietary energy level (0-d DP (STD)) (n = 43), and a short DP and standard postpartum dietary energy level (30-d DP (STD)) (n = 43). Milk progesterone concentration was determined three times per week until 100 DIM. Plasma metabolite and hormone concentrations were measured weekly until week 7 postpartum. Reducing postpartum dietary energy level in older cows (parity ≥ 3) after no DP and 22 DIM did not affect milk production but prevented a positive energy balance and shortened the interval from calving to OLA. In addition, services per pregnancy and days open were reduced in cows of parity ≥ 3 on 0-d DP (LOW), compared with cows of parity ≥ 3 with 0-d DP (STD), but not in cows of parity 2. Full article
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13 pages, 906 KiB  
Article
Efficacy of Different Drenching Regimens of Gluconeogenic Precursors during Transition Period on Body Condition Score, Production, Reproductive Performance, Subclinical Ketosis and Economics of Dairy Cows
by Nagwa I. El-Kasrawy, Ayman A. Swelum, Mervat A. Abdel-Latif, Abd El-Wahab A. Alsenosy, Noha A. Beder, Saad Alkahtani, Mohamed M. Abdel-Daim and Ayman H. Abd El-Aziz
Animals 2020, 10(6), 937; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10060937 - 29 May 2020
Cited by 14 | Viewed by 3827
Abstract
A total of 108 Holstein cows were used to evaluate the effect of drenching propylene glycol (PG) either individually or in combination with glycerol (G) on body condition score (BCS), production, reproductive performance, protection against subclinical ketosis and economic benefit of dairy cows [...] Read more.
A total of 108 Holstein cows were used to evaluate the effect of drenching propylene glycol (PG) either individually or in combination with glycerol (G) on body condition score (BCS), production, reproductive performance, protection against subclinical ketosis and economic benefit of dairy cows during the transition period. The six groups (n = 18/group) were; Control group, cows received no treatment; PG300, cows were drenched 300 mL PG for 7 days pre-expected day of calving and 21 days post-calving; PG400, cows were drenched 400 mL PG for 7 days pre-and 7 days post-calving; PG500, cows were drenched 500 mL PG for 10 days pre-and 10 days post-calving; GPG150, cows were drenched a mixture of 150 mL G and 150 mL PG for 21 days pre-and 21 days post-calving; GPG250, cows were drenched a mixture of 250 mL G and 250 mL PG for 21 days pre-and 21 days post-calving. BCS at 30 days in milk (DIM) was significantly higher in all treated groups in comparison to the control one and the best values were observed in GPG250, GPG150 and PG500 groups. Lactation length (LL) was significantly (p < 0.001) shorter in GPG250, GPG150 and PG500 groups than control group. There was a significant increment in 305 milk yield (p < 0.001) and average daily milk yield (p < 0.001) in GPG250 and PG500 groups than other groups except for PG300 with the lowest values for control and PG400. Cows in all treatment groups were observed in heat and conceived earlier as well as had shorter open days and calving interval durations (p < 0.001) and low number of services per conception (p = 0.004) compared to control group with better results for PG500 and GPG250 groups. BHB level and percentage of cows suffered from subclinical ketosis at 7 DIM was significantly lower in GPG250, GPG150 and PG500 groups than control group. Cows in treatment groups had a significantly higher glucose level (p = 0.006) compared to control group. Regarding to economics, the control group showed the highest feed costs, insemination costs and total costs per animal. Additionally, control and PG400 groups had the highest cost per kilogram of milk from total and feed costs compared to other cows. PG300, PG500 and GPG250 groups recorded a greater net return and income over feed cost (IOFC). In conclusion, the continuous drenching of propylene glycol either individually or in combination with glycerol regimens for long duration (PG300, PG500, GPG150, GPG250) during the transition period of dairy cows may reduce the incidence of subclinical ketosis and consequently improve milk production, reproduction and economics compared to drenching for short duration (PG400). Full article
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17 pages, 2045 KiB  
Article
Effects of Aloe arborescens Whole Plant Homogenate on Lipid Metabolism, Inflammatory Conditions and Liver Function of Dairy Cows during the Transition Period
by Matteo Mezzetti, Andrea Minuti, Massimo Bionaz, Fiorenzo Piccioli-Cappelli and Erminio Trevisi
Animals 2020, 10(5), 917; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10050917 (registering DOI) - 25 May 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 4969
Abstract
The anti-hyperlipidemic and anti-inflammatory effects exerted by Aloe on monogastric mammals suggest it as a potential strategy to address the tremendous metabolic alterations that affect dairy cows during their transition to calving. A group of 20 multiparous Italian Holstein dairy cows were housed [...] Read more.
The anti-hyperlipidemic and anti-inflammatory effects exerted by Aloe on monogastric mammals suggest it as a potential strategy to address the tremendous metabolic alterations that affect dairy cows during their transition to calving. A group of 20 multiparous Italian Holstein dairy cows were housed in freestalls and allocated into two homogeneous groups to receive either 200 g/d of water (CTR) or 200 g/day of Aloe arborescens Mill. whole plant homogenate through a rumen tube (AAM) between −14 and 14 days from calving (DFC). From −14 to 35 DFC, the BCS, and milk yield were measured, and blood samples were collected to assess the hematochemical profile. Data underwent ANOVA testing using a mixed model for repeated measurements, including the treatment and time and their interactions as fixed effects. Compared to CTR cows, AAM cows had a less pronounced BCS loss in early lactation (p < 0.01), indicating less mobilization of body reserves. Compared to CTR cows, AAM cows had a lower plasma concentration of nonesterified fatty acids and beta hydroxybutyrate (p < 0.01 and = 0.01 respectively) that, paired with the lower butterfat content and fat/protein ratio in their milk (p = 0.03 and < 0.01 respectively), indicates that Aloe reduced the mobilization of body fats. AAM cows had a reduced concentration of myeloperoxidase in plasma and a lower SCC in milk compared to CTR cows (p = 0.02 for both), indicating an anti-inflammatory effect of Aloe. Furthermore, AAM cows had a lower plasma concentration of ceruloplasmin (p < 0.05) and higher plasma concentration of cholesterol, retinol, and paraoxonase compared to CTR cows (p < 0.01, < 0.01 and < 0.05 respectively), indicating Aloe was effective in mitigating the acute phase response in early lactation. Finally, AAM cows had lower plasma creatinine concentrations around calving (p < 0.05), a lower concentration of plasma bilirubin, and a higher concentration of plasma tocopherol compared to CTR cows (p = 0.01 for both). These data suggest Aloe has anti-hyperlipidemic and anti-inflammatory effects on transition dairy cows that could have ameliorated liver and kidney function disruption and increased the availability of body antioxidants in early lactation. Full article
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17 pages, 1062 KiB  
Article
Pegbovigrastim Treatment around Parturition Enhances Postpartum Immune Response Gene Network Expression of whole Blood Leukocytes in Holstein and Simmental Cows
by Vincenzo Lopreiato, Ernesto Palma, Andrea Minuti, Juan J. Loor, Mariangela Lopreiato, Francesca Trimboli, Valeria Maria Morittu, Anna Antonella Spina, Domenico Britti and Erminio Trevisi
Animals 2020, 10(4), 621; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10040621 - 3 Apr 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 3371
Abstract
Pegbovigrastim is a commercial long-acting analog of bovine granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (rbG-CSF) that promotes the increased count and functionality of polymorphonuclear cells in dairy cows around the time of parturition. We hypothesized that pegbovigrastim administered to periparturient cows at approximately seven days before [...] Read more.
Pegbovigrastim is a commercial long-acting analog of bovine granulocyte colony-stimulating factor (rbG-CSF) that promotes the increased count and functionality of polymorphonuclear cells in dairy cows around the time of parturition. We hypothesized that pegbovigrastim administered to periparturient cows at approximately seven days before parturition and within 24 hours after calving could affect the profiles of gene networks involved in leukocyte function. Blood was collected on Day 3 after calving from treated groups (pegbovigrastim (PEG); 13 Simmental (seven multiparous and six primiparous) and 13 Holstein (seven multiparous and six primiparous) cows) that received pegbovigrastim (Imrestor; Elanco Animal Health) and controls (CTR; 13 Simmental (seven multiparous and six primiparous) and 13 Holstein (six multiparous and seven primiparous) cows) that received saline solution. Blood from all cows was sampled from the jugular vein in a PAXgene Blood RNA System tube (Preanalytix, Hombrechtikon, Switzerland) for RNA extraction. The RT-qPCR analysis was performed to investigate a panel of 34 genes of interest, representing recognition, immune mediation, migration, cell adhesion, antimicrobial strategies, inflammatory cascade, oxidative pattern, and leukotrienes in whole blood leukocytes. Normalized data were subjected to the MIXED model of SAS (ver. 9.4) with treatment, breed, parity, and their interaction as fixed effects. Compared with CTR, whole blood leukocytes of PEG cows had higher expression of genes involved in recognition and immune modulation (CD14, CD16, MYD88, TLR2, and TLR4), cell adhesion (ITGB2, ITGAL, TLN1, SELL, SELPLG, and CD44), antimicrobial activity (MMP9, LTF, and LCN2), and inflammatory cascade (CASP1, TNFRSF1A, IL1B, IL1R, IL18, IRAK1, NLRP3, and S100A8). This suggested an improvement of migration, adhesion, and antimicrobial ability and an enhanced inflammatory response, which in turn could trigger immune cell activation and enhance function. Expression of SOD2 and ALOX5 was also greater in the PEG group. In contrast, compared with CTR cows, PEG led to lower expression of RPL13A, ALOX15, IL8, and TNF. Overall, leukocytes from Simmental compared with Holstein cows had greater expression of IDO1, RPL13A, ALOX5, CD44, CX3CR1, ITGB2, and TNFA, whereas expression of CD16 and TLR2 was lower. Overall, compared with multiparous cows, primiparous cows had higher expression of IL1B, IL18, MYD88, SELL, and TLR2 and lower expression of MMP9. Simmental cows seemed more sensitive to induction of the immune system after calving, as revealed by the greater abundance of genes involved in immune system adaptation, regardless of pegbovigrastim treatment. Primiparous cows undergoing a new stress condition with respect to older cows were characterized by leukocytes with a higher inflammatory response. In conclusion, pegbovigrastim led to higher expression levels of most genes involved in the processes investigated, suggesting a thorough activation of the immune machinery during the critical post-partum period. Full article
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20 pages, 5454 KiB  
Article
Identification of Plasma Fatty Acids in Four Lipid Classes to Understand Energy Metabolism at Different Levels of Ketonemia in Dairy Cows Using Thin Layer Chromatography and Gas Chromatographic Techniques (TLC-GC)
by Enrico Fiore, Rossella Tessari, Massimo Morgante, Matteo Gianesella, Tamara Badon, Silvia Bedin, Elisa Mazzotta and Michele Berlanda
Animals 2020, 10(4), 571; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10040571 - 29 Mar 2020
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2826
Abstract
Excessive mobilization of adipose tissue in high milk producing dairy cows predisposes to metabolic diseases. The aim of this research was to identify the plasma fatty acids in four lipid classes as biomarkers for the diagnosis of hyperketonemia in bovines using thin layer [...] Read more.
Excessive mobilization of adipose tissue in high milk producing dairy cows predisposes to metabolic diseases. The aim of this research was to identify the plasma fatty acids in four lipid classes as biomarkers for the diagnosis of hyperketonemia in bovines using thin layer chromatography and gas chromatographic techniques (TLC-GC). Sixty multiparous Holstein–Friesian dairy cows were enrolled in the study. Blood samples from the coccygeal vein were collected and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) was evaluated. All animals were divided into three groups on the basis of ketonemia: BHB < 0.50 mmol/L, 0.50 < BHB < 1.0 mmol/L, and BHB > 1.0 mmol/L. Plasma fatty acid concentrations were evaluated in four lipid classes: Free Fatty Acids (FFA), Triglycerides (TG), Cholesterol Esters (CE) And Phospholipids (PL). The concentration of fatty acids was analyzed using TLC-GC. The results showed the following significance in the lipid classes: 19 fatty acids were significant (p < 0.053) in FFA, nine fatty acids were significant (p < 0.050) in TG, eight fatty acids were significant (p < 0.050) in CE and three fatty acids were significant (p < 0.049) in PL. Eleven parameters were considered as predictive fatty acids related to animals in hyperketonemia. The FFA increased simultaneously with blood BHB levels, although the identified predictive fatty acids related to the TG and CE lipid classes decreased, meanwhile the BHB values increased. In the PL lipid class, no fatty acids were predictive. Full article
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12 pages, 787 KiB  
Article
Genetic Analysis of Milk Production Traits and Mid-Infrared Spectra in Chinese Holstein Population
by Chao Du, Liangkang Nan, Lei Yan, Qiuyue Bu, Xiaoli Ren, Zhen Zhang, Ahmed Sabek and Shujun Zhang
Animals 2020, 10(1), 139; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10010139 - 15 Jan 2020
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 3008
Abstract
Milk composition always serves as an indicator for the cow’s health status and body condition. Some non-genetic factors such as parity, days in milk (DIM), and calving season, which obviously affect milk performance, therefore, need to be considered in dairy farm management. However, [...] Read more.
Milk composition always serves as an indicator for the cow’s health status and body condition. Some non-genetic factors such as parity, days in milk (DIM), and calving season, which obviously affect milk performance, therefore, need to be considered in dairy farm management. However, only a few milk compositions are used in the current animal selection programs. The mid-infrared (MIR) spectroscopy can reflect the global composition of milk, but this information is currently underused. The objectives of this study were to detect the effect of some non-genetic factors on milk production traits as well as 1060 individual spectral points covering from 925.92 cm−1 to 5011.54 cm−1, estimate heritabilities of milk production traits and MIR spectral wavenumbers, and explore the genetic correlations between milk production traits and 1060 individual spectral points in a Chinese Holstein population. The mixed models procedure of SAS software was used to test the non-genetic factors. Single-trait animal models were used to estimate heritabilities and bivariate animal models were used to estimate genetic correlations using the package of ASReml in R software. The results showed that herd, parity, calving season, and lactation stage had significant effects on the percentages of protein and lactose, whereas herd and lactation stage had significant effects on fat percentage. Moreover, the herd showed a significant effect on all of the 1060 individual wavenumbers, whereas lactation stage, parity, and calving season had significant effect on most of the wavenumbers of the lactose-region (925 cm−1 to 1200 cm−1), protein-region (1240 cm−1 to 1600 cm−1), and fat-regions (1680 cm−1 to 1770 cm−1 and 2800 cm−1 to 3015 cm−1). The estimated heritabilities for protein percentage (PP), fat percentage (FP), and lactose percentage (LP) were 0.08, 0.05, and 0.09, respectively. Further, the milk spectrum was heritable but low for most individual points. Heritabilities of 1060 individual spectral points were 0.04 on average, ranging from 0 to 0.11. In particular, heritabilities for wavenumbers of spectral regions related to water absorption were very low and even null, and heritabilities for wavenumbers of specific MIR regions associated with fat-I, fat-II, protein, and lactose were 0.04, 0.06, 0.05, and 0.06 on average, respectively. The genetic correlations between PP and FP, PP and LP, FP, and LP were 0.78, −0.29, and −0.14, respectively. In addition, PP, FP, and LP shared the similar patterns of genetic correlations with the spectral wavenumbers. The genetic correlations between milk production traits and spectral regions related to important milk components varied from weak to very strong (0.01 to 0.94, and −0.01 to −0.96). The current study could be used as a management tool for dairy farms and also provides a further understanding of the genetic background of milk MIR spectra. Full article
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Review

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13 pages, 307 KiB  
Review
Outcomes from Experimental Testing of Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug (NSAID) Administration during the Transition Period of Dairy Cows
by Francesca Trimboli, Monica Ragusa, Cristian Piras, Vincenzo Lopreiato and Domenico Britti
Animals 2020, 10(10), 1832; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10101832 - 8 Oct 2020
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 2787
Abstract
During the transition period, dairy cows experience great physiological stress caused by changes in metabolism and in the immune and endocrine systems. A pro-inflammatory state is another difficulty faced by even apparently healthy animals. The most significant negative consequences of inflammation in dairy [...] Read more.
During the transition period, dairy cows experience great physiological stress caused by changes in metabolism and in the immune and endocrine systems. A pro-inflammatory state is another difficulty faced by even apparently healthy animals. The most significant negative consequences of inflammation in dairy cows are substantial impairment of milk production and deleterious effects on cows’ health in extreme cases. Nonetheless, a certain degree of inflammation is necessary to sustain physiological adaptations. In recent years, many studies have attempted to determine whether the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) in the transition period of dairy cows could positively affect milk production and cows’ health by controlling the inflammation status. This literature indicates that NSAIDs that act as preferential inhibitors of cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1) activity show important side effects (e.g., increased risk of retained placenta, culling, or metritis) even if milk production is, on average, ameliorated. In contrast, preferential inhibitors of cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) activity have overall positive effects on cows’ health, with potential beneficial effects on milk production. Furthermore, it is important to note that with certain NSAID treatments, milk discarding is mandatory to prevent contamination with drug residues, but increased milk production can compensate for the loss of milk revenue during the withdrawal period. Full article
17 pages, 1611 KiB  
Review
Metabolic Stress in the Transition Period of Dairy Cows: Focusing on the Prepartum Period
by Osvaldo Bogado Pascottini, Jo L. M. R. Leroy and Geert Opsomer
Animals 2020, 10(8), 1419; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10081419 - 14 Aug 2020
Cited by 49 | Viewed by 6947
Abstract
All modern, high-yielding dairy cows experience a certain degree of reduced insulin sensitivity, negative energy balance, and systemic inflammation during the transition period. Maladaptation to these changes may result in excessive fat mobilization, dysregulation of inflammation, immunosuppression, and, ultimately, metabolic or infectious disease [...] Read more.
All modern, high-yielding dairy cows experience a certain degree of reduced insulin sensitivity, negative energy balance, and systemic inflammation during the transition period. Maladaptation to these changes may result in excessive fat mobilization, dysregulation of inflammation, immunosuppression, and, ultimately, metabolic or infectious disease in the postpartum period. Up to half of the clinical diseases in the lifespan of high-yielding dairy cows occur within 3 weeks of calving. Thus, the vast majority of prospective studies on transition dairy cows are focused on the postpartum period. However, predisposition to clinical disease and key (patho)physiological events such as a spontaneous reduction in feed intake, insulin resistance, fat mobilization, and systemic inflammation already occur in the prepartum period. This review focuses on metabolic, adaptive events occurring from drying off until calving in high-yielding cows and discusses determinants that may trigger (mal)adaptation to these events in the late prepartum period. Full article
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21 pages, 1491 KiB  
Review
Mismatch of Glucose Allocation between Different Life Functions in the Transition Period of Dairy Cows
by Jonas Habel and Albert Sundrum
Animals 2020, 10(6), 1028; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani10061028 - 13 Jun 2020
Cited by 29 | Viewed by 4257
Abstract
Immune cell functions such as phagocytosis and synthesis of immunometabolites, as well as immune cell survival, proliferation and differentiation, largely depend on an adequate availability of glucose by immune cells. During inflammation, the glucose demands of the immune system may increase to amounts [...] Read more.
Immune cell functions such as phagocytosis and synthesis of immunometabolites, as well as immune cell survival, proliferation and differentiation, largely depend on an adequate availability of glucose by immune cells. During inflammation, the glucose demands of the immune system may increase to amounts similar to those required for high milk yields. Similar metabolic pathways are involved in the adaptation to both lactation and inflammation, including changes in the somatotropic axis and glucocorticoid response, as well as adipokine and cytokine release. They affect (i) cell growth, proliferation and activation, which determines the metabolic activity and thus the glucose demand of the respective cells; (ii) the overall availability of glucose through intake, mobilization and gluconeogenesis; and (iii) glucose uptake and utilization by different tissues. Metabolic adaptation to inflammation and milk synthesis is interconnected. An increased demand of one life function has an impact on the supply and utilization of glucose by competing life functions, including glucose receptor expression, blood flow and oxidation characteristics. In cows with high genetic merits for milk production, changes in the somatotropic axis affecting carbohydrate and lipid metabolism as well as immune functions are profound. The ability to cut down milk synthesis during periods when whole-body demand exceeds the supply is limited. Excessive mobilization and allocation of glucose to the mammary gland are likely to contribute considerably to peripartal immune dysfunction. Full article
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