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MOSCOW, ID, United States

Thompson I.M.,University of Florida | Tao S.,University of Florida | Branen J.,Biotracking, Llc | Ealy A.D.,University of Florida | Dahl G.E.,University of Florida
Journal of Animal Science | Year: 2013

Environmental factors, such as photoperiod and heat stress, can be manipulated during the dry period to influence health, productivity, and reproductive performance of dairy cows in their subsequent lactation. The impacts of photoperiod and heat stress on subsequent lactation are related to alterations in prolactin (PRL) signaling and may affect the expression of pregnancy-specific protein B (PSPB). Additionally, exposure of cows to heat stress during the dry period decreases gestation length; however, the mechanism involved in this process is unknown. The objective of these experiments was to evaluate the influence of environmental factors (i.e., heat stress and photoperiod) during late gestation (i.e., dry period) on PSPB concentrations in plasma of dairy cows. In Exp. 1, cows were dried off in the summer months approximately 46 d before expected calving and assigned randomly to heat stress (HT; n = 30) or cooling (CL; n = 30) treatment. Cooling cows were housed with sprinklers, fans, and shade, whereas HT cows were provided only shade. In Exp. 2, cows were dried off at approximately 60 d before expected calving in summer/fall months and randomly assigned to 3 treatments: long day photoperiod (LDPP: 16L:8D; n = 15), short day photoperiod (SDPP: 8L:16D; n = 14) and SDPP+PRL implant (12 mg/d of PRL at 28 d or 16 mg/d of PRL at 39 d; n = 11). In both experiments, plasma samples were collected at dry off and at -32, -18, -7, -3 and 0 d relative to calving. In Exp. 1, greater concentrations of PSPB were detected in plasma of CL versus HT cows (388.3 ± 24.7 vs. 287.4 ± 23.8 ng/mL; P < 0.01). Concentrations of PSPB did not differ between -46 to -18 d before calving (66.0 ng/mL). However, PSPB concentrations were greater (P < 0.01) for CL cows at d -7 (534.7 > 357.2 ng/mL), -3 (807.2 > 572.2 ng/mL) and 0 (800.8 > 563.5 ng/mL) relative to calving. Additionally, HT cows in Exp. 1 had increased PRL plasma concentrations compared with CL cows (21.01 ± 1.6 vs. 13.78 ± 1.6 ng/ mL). In Exp. 2, no differences were detected in plasma concentrations of PSPB (ng/mL) among LDPP, SDPP, or SDPP+PRL groups on d -60 (41.5), -32 (51.7), -18 (58.5), -7 (532.9), -3 (838.2), and 0 (729.4) relative to parturition. Photoperiodic PRL concentrations were 10.81, 7.84, and 4.22 ng/mL for LDPP, SDPP+ PRL, and SDPP, respectively. Results indicate that HT alters PSPB concentrations in late pregnancy, suggesting that placental activity is altered in cows exposed to excessive elevated temperatures around the time of calving. However, the mechanism involved likely is not associated with changes in PRL secretion. © 2013 American Society of Animal Science. All rights reserved. Source

Agency: Department of Agriculture | Branch: | Program: SBIR | Phase: Phase I | Award Amount: 99.71K | Year: 2011

Maintaining the expected quality and safety of food products is often difficult due to potential chemical and biological contamination. Of particular concern is the threat of food poisoning. Over 40 different foodborne microbial pathogens cause an estimated 30 million cases of human illness each year costing >$12 billion annually. Over the last 20 years, food-borne diseases caused by microbes have created increasingly significant concerns in the national political agenda and gained media attention. In addition to food-borne diseases, the use of pathogenic microorganisms as weapons of mass destruction remains a threat throughout the world. Agencies like, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of Homeland Security must seek refined protocols for the rapid characterization and identification of pathogenic bacteria. Although, classical microbiological tests are available for detection and identification of pathogenic bacteria in samples, they usually involve a number of analytical steps of long duration and must be conducted by highly qualified scientific personnel. Therefore, new and faster techniques based on molecular biology principles have emerged during the last 10 years to supplement traditional methodology. This project will assess the feasibility to develop multi-layered nanoparticles that can be integrated into a Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) system for simple, accurate and sensitive detection of foodborne pathogens. Successful completion of this project will provide a new avenue for rapid bacterial detection along with a viable product to be developed for food safety markets. The advantageous characteristics of nanomaterials have made them an important component in a number emerging technologies. There are significant opportunities for the use of nano-material biosensors for food product and environmental monitoring, among many other offshoot applications. Therefore, development, of nanomaterial-based SERS biosensors has a high probability of usefulness. This Phase I grant is designed to build on preliminary research to prove the concept that SERS active nanoparticles can be designed and manufactured that can be directly used in a combinatorial approach to isolate and concentrate pathogenic microorganisms from food products as well as serve to enhance and develop a unique specific signal in a SERS optical biosensor. Both the particles and the optical method used to detect microorganisms have potential for commercialization.

Biotracking, Llc | Date: 2011-03-01

Testing systems and methods are disclosed for detecting a pregnancy marker of an animal. A test kit may include a first standard with a first concentration of the marker, a second standard with a second concentration of the marker lower than the first concentration, and at least three test surfaces coated with a biomolecular recognition element selected to bind with the marker. The test may also include a reagent solution with a conjugated biomolecular recognition element that binds with the marker, and a visual indicator that produces a visually detectable change when reacting with the conjugated biomolecular recognition element bound to each test surface. A detectable change generated by the marker from the sample with an intensity greater than the first concentration yields a pregnant result, lower than the second concentration yields a not pregnant result, and between the first and second concentrations yields a retest result.

Biotracking, Llc | Date: 2013-11-02

Genetic identity tests comprised of reagents. Marking ink for animals. Animal semen; Animal semen for artificial insemination; In vitro gender prediction test kit; In-vitro ovulation prediction test kit for home use; Medicated animal feed; Micro-nutrient animal feed; Ovulation test kits; Pregnancy test kits for home use; Probiotic animal feed; Protein supplements for animals; Veterinary vaccines for Livestock; Vitamins and dietary food supplements for animals. Ultrasonic instrumentation for testing machines; Ultrasound inspection devices for non-medical, non-destructive testing. Blood testing apparatus; Blood testing apparatus, namely, blood collecting tubes; Blood testing apparatus, namely, blood sampling tubes; Home urine collection kit consisting of test tubes, pipette, and self-mailer used to determine a persons nutraceutical needs; Veterinary apparatus, namely, flexible stainless steel probe for delivery of high volume liquids directly to the rumen of large animals; Veterinary imaging products, namely, digital video camera connected to a tapered probe useful in viewing ear canals or other cavities of animals for diagnosis and treatment; Veterinary protective boots for animals after a veterinary procedure. Animal embryos; Live animals; Live animals, namely, all livestock. Testing, inspection or research on agriculture, livestock breeding or fisheries. Animal breeding; Breeding and stud services for Livestock; Breeding of livestock for others, namely, seedstock producers; Breeding services for Livestock; Providing animal breeding information in the field of wildlife preservation; Stud and breeding services for Livestock.

Biotracking, Llc | Date: 2013-11-03


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