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Anim Sci J. 2017 Jan;88(1):140-148. doi: 10.1111/asj.12604. Epub 2016 Apr 18.

Effects of road transportation on metabolic and immunological responses in Holstein heifers.

Kang HJ1,2, Lee IK1,2, Piao MY1,2, Kwak CW1,2, Gu MJ1,2, Yun CH1,2, Kim HJ1,2, Ahn HJ1,2, Kim HB1,2, Kim GH3, Kim SK3, Ko JY4, Ha JK1,2, Baik M1,2.

Author information

1
Department of Agricultural Biotechnology and Research Institute of Agriculture and Life Sciences, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Seoul National University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
2
Institutes of Green Bio Science Technology, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
3
Department of Animal Science and Technology, Konkuk University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.
4
National Agricultural Cooperative Federation, Anseong, Republic of Korea.

Abstract

This study examined the effects of road transportation on metabolic and immunological responses in dairy heifers. Twenty Holstein heifers in early pregnancy were divided into non-transported (NT; n = 7) and transported (T; n = 13) groups. Blood was collected before transportation (BT), immediately after transportation for 100 km (T1) and 200 km (T2), and 24 h after transportation (AT). The T heifers had higher (P < 0.05) blood cortisol and non-esterified fatty acid concentrations after T1 and T2 than did NT heifers. By contrast, the T heifers had lower (P < 0.05) serum triglyceride concentrations after T1 and T2 than had the NT heifers. The serum cortisol and triglyceride concentrations returned (P > 0.05) to the BT concentrations at 24 h AT in the T heifers. The granulocyte-to-lymphocyte ratio and the percentage of monocytes were higher (P < 0.05) after T2 in the T heifers than in the NT heifers, suggesting that transportation stress increased the numbers of innate immune cells. T heifers had higher (P < 0.01) plasma haptoglobin concentrations than NT heifers 24 h AT. In conclusion, transportation increased cortisol secretion and was correlated with increased metabolic responses and up-regulation of peripheral innate immune cells in dairy heifers.

KEYWORDS:

dairy heifers; early pregnant; metabolic and immunological responses; stress; transportation

PMID:
27087166
DOI:
10.1111/asj.12604
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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