The main objective of the study was to describe the relationship of high somatic cell count (SCC) with the incidence of abnormal postpartum resumption of ovarian cyclicity and reproductive performance in dairy cows. The factors influencing SCC were also investigated. Four hundred and forty-seven cows from six dairy herds in Japan were monitored for SCC and postpartum resumption of ovarian cyclicity. Cows with high SCC (200,000 to 500,000) had a higher incidence of prolonged luteal phase (P < 0.01) than cows with an SCC of 50,000 to 100,000. The high SCC cows (> 500,000) also showed a higher incidence of delayed first ovulation post partum than cows with an SCC ≤500,000 (P < 0.05) during the first month post partum. Cows with an SCC of 200,000 to 500,000 showed lower conception and pregnancy rates, and more days from calving to conception than cows with an SCC of less than 200,000 (P < 0.05). Cows in parity 5 or more had a higher incidence of high SCC than cows in the first and second parities (P < 0.05). It is concluded that cows with a high SCC have a higher incidence of abnormal postpartum resumption of ovarian cyclicity, leading to reduced reproductive performance.
Milk yield, milk ingredients, health and other, production-related parameters of subclinically infected, Mycobacterium avium ssp. paratuberculosis (MAP-) shedding (positive faecal PCR, n = 20) and non-shedding (negative faecal PCR, n = 10) dairy cows were compared in the period from 10 days prepartum to 120 days postpartum. Body condition, rumen fill and faeces scores were lower in the MAP-shedding cows. There was no significant difference in plasma or urine metabolic parameters between the groups. Milk yield and lactose content tended to be lower (P = 0.074 and 0.077, respectively), somatic cell count tended to be higher (P = 0.097), while milk fat content was significantly higher (P = 0.006) in MAP-shedding cows than in the controls. Milk protein content did not differ between the groups. All other health and production parameters [number of reproductive tract treatments, number of udder treatments, number of artificial inseminations (AIs), calving interval, and service period] were significantly better in the control group. It is concluded that MAP infection, even in a subclinical form, has a significant impact on some production and health parameters of dairy cows.
The energy imbalance related predisposition to mastitis was studied in group-fed postpartum dairy cows (n = 333) kept in 4 large-scale units and producing milk of low somatic cell count (SCC). Blood samples were taken on Days 1-3 after calving for assaying some metabolites and hormones related to the negative energy balance (NEB). If mastitis was diagnosed later, aseptic milk samples were taken to identify the pathogens. Considering pathogen types [contagious pathogens: Staphylococcus (S.) aureus, Gram-positive (GP) environmental pathogens, and Gram-negative (GN) environmental pathogens + mastitis with no detectable pathogens (NDP)] separately, stepwise logistic regression was used to analyse the relation between the potential prognostic value of hormones and metabolites and mastitis outbreak. Only the elevated (= 1.00 mmol/l) serum ß-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) levels predisposed the cows to mastitis in the subsequent 4 weeks. This prognostic value of BHB was significant only in GN + NDP mastitis and in cases caused by GP environmental pathogens, but not in S. aureus mastitis (odds ratio: 5.333, 3.600 and 1.333, respectively).
Rumen-protected choline (RPC) was evaluated for effects on the lipid and glycogen content of the liver and metabolic variables in the blood plasma of dairy cows. Thirty-two Holstein cows were allocated into two groups (RPC group with RPC supplementation and control group without RPC supplementation) 28 days before the expected calving. Cows were fed the experimental diet from 21 days before calving until day 60 of lactation. The diet of the RPC group was supplemented with 100 g/day of RPC from 21 days prepartum until calving and 200 g/day of RPC for 60 days postpartum, providing 25 and 50 g of choline, respectively. Liver samples were taken by percutaneous needle biopsy, then analysed for total lipid (TLl), triglyceride (TGl) and glycogen (GLYl) contents on days −21, +7, +35 and +60 relative to calving. Blood was collected on the same sampling days and 21 days after calving. Glucose, non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA), β-hydroxybutyrate (BHBA), triglyceride (TGp), total cholesterol (TCh), urea, ammonia and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) were determined from blood samples. The TLl and TGl contents were 25.0 ± 4.3 g and 25.3 ± 3.8 g per kg wet weight (mean ± SEM), respectively, lower in the RPC group than in the control animals. No significant differences were observed in the GLYl concentrations between the two groups. However, a lower TGl: GLYl ratio was shown in the liver of cows fed the RPC diet as compared to the controls. RPC supplementation decreased BHBA while increasing TGp concentrations were shown in the blood of cows fed the RPC diet, possibly as a consequence of improved lipoprotein synthesis in, and triglyceride excretion from, the liver, together with a reduced rate of ketogenesis.
The importance of the dry period (DP) in dairycows has been described by many authors and mainly relies on the positive effects on the mammary epithelial component and the optimisation of milk production
The heart rate variability (HRV) parameters of dairy cows were monitored during parlour (PARL) and the later installed automatic (AMS) milking on a small-scale commercial dairy farm in Hungary. The aim of the study was to assess stress in relation to the type of milking and the frequency of human interaction. Parlour milking involved regular moving and crowding of the animals with frequent human interaction, which were much less frequent in automatic milking. The first phase of the study was conducted prior to the changeover [n = 27] and the second two months afterwards [n = 19 (of the cows from the first phase)]. Heart rate (HR) was recorded by the Polar RS800 CX recording system. HRV parameters indicative of sympathovagal balance were calculated for periods of lying and standing in the barn, waiting before milking and milking, respectively. Morning and evening faecal glucocorticoid concentrations were also measured. Fear of humans was tested by an avoidance distance test. Baseline HRV parameters showed no difference (P > 0.05) between the two systems. In the periods before, during and after milking a higher sympathetic tone was detected in cows in the PARL phase. Mean faecal glucocorticoid concentrations were higher at the time of parlour milking. The avoidance distance did not differ between the two phases. The results suggest that automatic milking might be less stressful for cows than parlour milking, possibly due to the shorter duration of restraint after milking and the less frequent human interaction.
The aim of this study was to compare the concentrations of blood variables obtained simultaneously from the jugular and mammary veins of dairy cows. Eighty Holstein cows were divided into four equal groups: dry, low- (LY), medium- (MY) and high-yielding (HY). Blood insulin, glucose, non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA), beta-hydroxybutyrate (BHBA) and urea concentrations were measured. The jugular and mammary vein (J/M) ratio between concentrations of each variable was calculated. Differences between the groups of cows in concentrations of variables in the jugular vein were not in accordance with those obtained for the mammary vein. J/M values for insulin and glucose concentrations were above 1.0 in all groups of cows. The ratios for NEFA and BHBA concentrations were under or equal to 1.0 in dry and LY cows but above 1.0 in the MY and HY groups, indicating that in MY and HY cows those metabolites are apparently utilised by the mammary gland. J/M values for urea were above 1.0 in dry and LY cows but less than 1.0 in groups MY and HY, indicating that in the latter case urea is apparently released by the mammary gland. In conclusion, J/M for NEFA, BHBA and urea may be useful for estimation of the critical point when the mammary gland receives insufficient energy precursors for its current activity.
Primiparous and multiparous lactating crossbred dairy cows (after Day 40 postpartum) with a mature corpus luteum (CL) (diameter of ≥ 17 mm determined by ultrasonography) and having a follicle with a diameter of ≥ 10 mm were treated with natural prostaglandin F2α (n = 80). Those from the cows that showed oestrus within 5 days after treatment were inseminated (Group 1: n = 39). Other group of cows showing oestrus without treatment (Group 2: n = 41) were inseminated and served as controls. The ovaries of each cow were scanned by transrectal ultrasonography from the day of detected oestrus (Day −1p.m.) until ovulation, to measure the changes in the areas of the CL and the largest follicle and to determine the occurrence of ovulation. Although no significant differences were found between the treated and untreated cows in terms of a reduction in the area of the corpora lutea and of an increase in the area of the dominant follicles, the mean area of these follicles in Group 2 was somewhat greater than in Group 1. The highest conception rate was achieved if AI was performed at the same day as ovulation occurred in both groups (conception rate in treated group was: 62.5%, in untreated group: 66.6%, respectively) between Day 0a.m. to Day 0p.m.. In Group 1, 54.5% conception rate has been achieved if ovulation occurred between Day 0p.m. to Day 1p.m., or 50% between Day 1p.m. to Day 2p.m. after AI, and 53.3% and 44.4% in Group 2, respectively. The conception rate for cows that ovulated before AI in Group 2 was 25%. No ovulation occurred in 7 cows until Day 2p.m. after AI and none of them became pregnant. The overall conception rate was approximately 50% in both groups, but when the cows had ovulated too early or too late relative to the time of AI, the conception rate was significantly lower, thus determination of the optimal time for AI is of great practical importance in dairy herds.
( Diskin and Morris, 2008 ). The aim of this study was to examine the effect of C. burnetii seropositivity by ELISA and complement fixation test (CFT) on early pregnancy and fetal losses in dairycows between days 29 and 70 of gestation in some Hungarian
a systemic effect on the entire immune status ( Papaioannou et al., 2005 ; Pavelic et al., 2018 ; Mastinu et al., 2019 ). In this study, after evaluating the presence and levels of Cu, Pb, Zn, Cd and Fe in the milk of dairycows and the effects of