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Asian-Australas J Anim Sci. 2013 Feb;26(2):202-10. doi: 10.5713/ajas.2012.12442.

Limiting Concentrate during Growing Period Affect Performance and Gene Expression of Hepatic Gluconeogenic Enzymes and Visfatin in Korean Native Beef Calves.

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1
Hanwoo Experimental Station, National Institute of Animal Science, RDA, Pyeongchang, Korea.

Abstract

This study elucidated the effects of limited concentrate feeding on growth, plasma profile, and gene expression of gluconeogenic enzymes and visfatin in the liver of Hanwoo beef calves. The purpose of this study was to test that reducing the amount of concentrate would partially be compensated by increasing the intake of forage and by altering the metabolic status. The study utilized 20 Korean native beef calves (Hanwoo; 60 to 70 d of age) divided into two groups of 10 calves each for 158 d. Control group calves received the amount of concentrate as per the established Korean feeding standards for Hanwoo, whereas calves in the restricted group only received half the amount of concentrate as per standard requirements. Good quality forage (Timothy hay) was available for ad libitum consumption to both groups. Since calves were with their dam until 4 months of age in breeding pens before weaning, the intake of milk before weaning was not recorded, however, the concentrate and forage intakes were recorded daily. Body weights (BW) were recorded at start and on 10 d interval. Blood samples were collected at start and at 50 d interval. On the final day of the experiment, liver biopsies were collected from all animals in each group. The BW was not different between the groups at all times, but tended to be higher (p = 0.061) only at final BW in control than restricted group. Total BW gain in the control group was 116.2 kg as opposed to 84.1 kg in restricted group that led to average BW gain of 736 g/d and 532 g/d in respective groups, and the differences were significant (p<0.01). As planned, the calves in the control group had higher concentrate and lower forage intake than the restricted group. The plasma variables like total protein and urea were higher (p<0.05) in control than restricted group. The mRNA expressions for the gluconeogenic enzymes such as cytosolic phosphoenol pyruvate carboxykinase (EC 4.1.1.32) and pyruvate carboxylase (EC 6.4.1.1), and visfatin measured by quantitative real-time PCR in liver biopsies showed higher expression (p<0.05) in restricted group than control. Overall, restricting concentrate severely reduced the growth intensity and affected few plasma indices, and gene expression in liver was increased indicating that restricting concentrate in the feeding schemes during early growth for beef calves is not advocated.

KEYWORDS:

Calf; Concentrate; Gluconeogenic Enzymes; Growth; Plasma

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