Münchweiler an der Alsenz, Germany
Münchweiler an der Alsenz, Germany

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Halli K.,Justus Liebig University | Koch C.,Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry | Romberg F.-J.,German Aerospace Center | Hoy S.,Justus Liebig University
Archiv Tierzucht | Year: 2015

The aim of this study was to determine whether feed intake amount and feed intake behaviour could be related to oestrus in dairy cows. Furthermore, we investigated whether oestrus had an effect on daily milk yield. A total of 138 oestrus cycles, leading to conception of 100 cows, were analysed. The parameters "daily fresh matter intake amount (kg)", "daily number of visits to the feeding trough" and "time spent feeding per day (min)" were electronically measured and recorded. For a sub-quantity of all animals, daily milk yield (kg) was recorded continuously and stored in the herd management software. Special attention was given to the day of oestrus, which was defined as the day of successful insemination. All remaining days of the oestrus cycle were considered as the reference period. Among all animals and cycles, fresh matter intake amount per day, number of visits per day, and time spent feeding per day were reduced by 10.3, 9.1 and 20.8%, respectively, on the day of oestrus. Fresh matter intake was significantly lower in primiparous cows than in multiparous cows. However, number of visits to the trough and time spent feeding per day were significantly higher in primiparous cows compared to multiparous cows. Day of oestrus did not have a significant effect on daily milk yield, as this parameter was characterized by high variation among all days of the oestrus cycle. In conclusion, if an RIC system is used, monitoring of feeding behaviour appears to be a potential auxiliary aid in oestrus detection. © Author(s) 2015. CC Attribution 3.0 License.


Kesser J.,University of Bonn | Hill M.,University of Bonn | Hill M.,Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry | Heinz J.F.L.,University of Bonn | And 10 more authors.
Journal of Dairy Science | Year: 2015

Adiponectin, an adipokine, regulates metabolism and insulin sensitivity. Considering that the transplacental transfer of maternal proteins of high molecular weight is hindered in ruminants, this study tested the hypothesis that the blood concentration of adiponectin in neonatal calves largely reflects their endogenous synthesis whereby the intake of colostrum might modify the circulating concentrations. We thus characterized the adiponectin concentrations in neonatal and young calves that were fed either colostrum or formula. Three trials were performed: in trial 1, 20 calves were all fed colostrum for 3 d, and then formula until weaning. Blood samples were collected on d 0 (before colostrum feeding), and on d 1, 3, 11, 22, 34, 43, 52, 70, 90, and 108 postnatum. In trial 2, 14 calves were studied for the first 4 d of life. They were fed colostrum (n = 7) or formula (n = 7), and blood samples were taken right after birth and before each morning feeding on d 2, 3, and 4. In trial 3, calves born preterm (n = 7) or at term received colostrum only at 24 h postnatum. Blood was sampled at birth, and before and 2 h after feeding. Additionally, allantoic fluid and blood from 4 Holstein cows undergoing cesarean section were sampled. Adiponectin was quantified by ELISA. In trial 1, the serum adiponectin concentrations recorded on d 3 were 4.7-fold higher than before colostrum intake. The distribution of the molecular weight forms of adiponectin differed before and after colostrum consumption. In trial 2, the colostrum group had consistently greater plasma adiponectin concentrations than the formula group after the first meal. In trial 3, the preterm calves tended to have lower concentrations of plasma adiponectin than the term calves at birth and before and 2 h after feeding. Furthermore, the adiponectin concentrations were substantially lower in allantoic fluid than in the sera from neonatal calves and from cows at parturition. Our results show that calves are born with very low blood concentrations of adiponectin and placental transfer of adiponectin to the bovine fetus is unlikely. In conclusion, colostrum intake is essential for the postnatal increase of circulating adiponectin in newborn calves. © 2015 American Dairy Science Association.


PubMed | University of Bonn, Foundation Medicine, University of Tabriz, Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry and Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of dairy science | Year: 2015

Adiponectin, an adipokine, regulates metabolism and insulin sensitivity. Considering that the transplacental transfer of maternal proteins of high molecular weight is hindered in ruminants, this study tested the hypothesis that the blood concentration of adiponectin in neonatal calves largely reflects their endogenous synthesis whereby the intake of colostrum might modify the circulating concentrations. We thus characterized the adiponectin concentrations in neonatal and young calves that were fed either colostrum or formula. Three trials were performed: in trial 1, 20 calves were all fed colostrum for 3 d, and then formula until weaning. Blood samples were collected on d 0 (before colostrum feeding), and on d 1, 3, 11, 22, 34, 43, 52, 70, 90, and 108 postnatum. In trial 2, 14 calves were studied for the first 4 d of life. They were fed colostrum (n=7) or formula (n=7), and blood samples were taken right after birth and before each morning feeding on d 2, 3, and 4. In trial 3, calves born preterm (n=7) or at term received colostrum only at 24 h postnatum. Blood was sampled at birth, and before and 2 h after feeding. Additionally, allantoic fluid and blood from 4 Holstein cows undergoing cesarean section were sampled. Adiponectin was quantified by ELISA. In trial 1, the serum adiponectin concentrations recorded on d 3 were 4.7-fold higher than before colostrum intake. The distribution of the molecular weight forms of adiponectin differed before and after colostrum consumption. In trial 2, the colostrum group had consistently greater plasma adiponectin concentrations than the formula group after the first meal. In trial 3, the preterm calves tended to have lower concentrations of plasma adiponectin than the term calves at birth and before and 2 h after feeding. Furthermore, the adiponectin concentrations were substantially lower in allantoic fluid than in the sera from neonatal calves and from cows at parturition. Our results show that calves are born with very low blood concentrations of adiponectin and placental transfer of adiponectin to the bovine fetus is unlikely. In conclusion, colostrum intake is essential for the postnatal increase of circulating adiponectin in newborn calves.


PubMed | University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, University of Bonn, Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry and Justus Liebig University
Type: | Journal: Journal of dairy science | Year: 2017

We aimed to test the effects of ad libitum feeding of whole milk (WM) or milk replacer (MR) versus restrictive feeding of MR during the first 4 wk of life on growth performance and on milk yield in the first lactation. We studied 57 German Holstein calves (29 females, 28 males) from birth until d 110 of life (trial 1). The 28 females from trial 1 were further studied during their first lactation (trial 2). In trial 1, all calves were randomly allocated at birth to 1 of 3 groups: MR-res [n = 20, 6.78 kg MR (11.5% solids)/calf per day], MR-ad lib (n = 17, 13.8% solids) or WM-ad lib (n = 20). All calves received colostrum ad libitum from their dam until d 3 of age. From d 4 to 27, calves were fed according to their group regimen. From d 28 to 55, all calves received MR-res feeding and were then gradually weaned until d 69. We recorded body weight (until d 110) and feed intake (amount, metabolizable energy, and frequency of liquid feed intake until weaning). We estimated the profitability of the different feeding regimens, taking into account income from milk yield (trial 2) and feed costs during rearing. In trial 1, the calves from WM-ad lib and MR-ad lib had total metabolizable energy intakes 2.02- and 1.65-fold greater than the MR-res group during the first 4 wk of life. During this period, concentrate intake did not differ among groups, but tended to be greater in WM-ad lib than in MR-ad lib calves from d 28 to 69. The MR-res calves visited the automatic feeders more often than the ad libitum-fed groups during differential feeding, but 70% of the visits were unrewarded (<10% in the ad libitum-fed calves). When all calves were fed at the MR-res level, the average proportion of unrewarded visits was 65% in all groups. Average daily gain and body weight were greater among MR-ad lib and WM-ad lib calves than among MR-res animals during the first 4 wk of life, but not from d 1 to 110. In trial 2, age at first calving, dry matter intake, and body weight over the first 10 mo of lactation were not different among groups, nor was milk composition. Milk yields (305 d) were numerically but not statistically greater in the ad libitum-fed groups during the first lactation (+765 kg for WM-ad lib vs. MR-res; +612 kg for MR-ad lib vs. MR-res). Feeding WM-ad lib and MR-ad lib was 1.37- and 1.21-fold more costly than MR-res, respectively, but amounted to 18, 15, and 13% of the total estimated feed costs until first calving in WM-ad lib, MR-ad lib, and MR-res, respectively. Our study confirms that ad libitum feeding is an attractive measure for rearing dairy calves, both for animal welfare and-with the caveat of a small sample size in trial 2 that led to insufficient power-economic profit from milk.


PubMed | University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, University of Bonn, Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry, Justus Liebig University and Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology
Type: | Journal: Journal of dairy science | Year: 2017

Feeding dairy calves at high intensity has been demonstrated to increase milk yield in later life. We investigated the effect of 3 different feeding regimens in the preweaning period on the metabolic and endocrine status during calfhood and in heifers at the onset of the first lactation. In trial 1, 57 German Holstein calves were allocated to 3 different feeding groups: milk replacer restricted to 6.78 kg/calf per day, 11.5% solids (MR-res, n = 20), milk replacer 13.8% solids, ad libitum (MR-ad lib, n = 17), and whole milk ad libitum (WM-ad lib, n = 20). All calves received ad libitum colostrum for 3 d postnatal (p.n.). From d 4 to 27, all calves were fed according to their respective feeding regimen, resulting in average intakes of 6.38, 9.25, and 9.47 kg/d in MR-res, MR-ad lib, and WM-ad lib, respectively. Thereafter, all calves were fed according to the MR-res regimen until weaning at d 55 (gradually until d 69 p.n.). Blood samples were collected on d 0 before colostrum intake and on d 1, 3, 11, 22, 34, 43, 52, 70, 90, and 108 p.n. Liver biopsies were taken on d 19 and 100, and on d 22, 52, and 108 p.n. intravenous glucose tolerance tests were performed. The male calves (n = 8 to 10 per group) underwent also an insulin tolerance test on d 24, 54, and 110 p.n. The females (n = 28) from trial 1 were further reared and bred as common practice, and were enrolled in trial 2 when beginning the last trimester of pregnancy. Blood samples were collected monthly antepartum starting 91 d before calving and weekly (0-70 d) postpartum. Trial 1 was subdivided into 4 phases (P): P0 (d 0-1), P1 (d 2-27), P2 (d 28-69), and P3 (d 70-110 p.n.). In trial 1, the leptin and adiponectin concentrations increased with colostrum intake. Differences in fatty acids, insulin, adiponectin, revised quantitative insulin sensitivity check index (RQUICKI), and variables from the glucose tolerance tests were largely limited to P1. The MR-res group had greater RQUICKI and fatty acid values, and lower insulin and, as a trend, adiponectin concentrations than in 1 or both ad lib groups. These differences were partly sustained in P2 (fatty acids, adiponectin, and RQUICKI) and in P3 (adiponectin). The hepatic mRNA abundance of the gluconeogenic enzymes phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase and pyruvatcarboxylase increased from d 19 to 100. None of the blood variables were different between the groups when tested in pregnancy and lactation. Our results do not support a sustained deflection of metabolic regulation by rearing at different feeding intensities; nevertheless, the differences observed during rearing might influence nutrient utilization in later life or the cellular development of organs, such as the mammary gland, and thereby affect milk yield. Further studies involving greater animal numbers and, thus, improved power will help to sort out the mechanisms of programming body function in later life via nutrition in early life.


Winkler A.,Bingen University of Applied Sciences | Gessner D.K.,Justus Liebig University | Koch C.,Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry | Romberg F.-J.,Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry | And 4 more authors.
Archives of Animal Nutrition | Year: 2015

During the periparturient phase, cows are typically in an inflammation-like condition, and it has been proposed that inflammation associated with the induction of stress of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in the liver contributes to the development of fatty liver syndrome and ketosis. In the present study, the hypothesis that supplementation of dairy cows with a plant product consisting of green tea (95%) and curcuma extract (5%) rich in polyphenols attenuates inflammation and ER stress in the liver during early lactation was investigated. Twenty-seven cows were assigned to two groups, either a control group (n = 14) or a treatment group (n = 13). Both groups of cows received a total mixed ration, and the ration of the treatment group was supplemented with 0.175 g of the plant product per kg dry matter from week 3 prepartum to week 9 postpartum. Dry matter intake and energy balance during week 2 to week 9 postpartum were not different between the two groups. However, cows supplemented with the plant product had a greater amount of energy-corrected milk during week 2 to week 9 postpartum and lower concentrations of triacylglycerols and cholesterol in the liver in week 1 and week 3 postpartum than cows of the control group (p < 0.05). Cows supplemented with the plant product showed a trend towards a reduced mRNA concentration of haptoglobin (p < 0.10), while relative mRNA concentrations of eight genes of the unfolded protein response considered in the liver were not different between the two groups of cows. Relative hepatic mRNA concentration of fibroblast growth factor, a stress hormone induced by various stress conditions, was reduced at week 1 and week 3 postpartum in cows supplemented with the plant product (p < 0.05). Overall, the data of this study suggest that – although there were only minor effects on the occurrence of ER stress and inflammation – a supplementation of polyphenols might be useful to improve milk yield and prevent fatty liver syndrome in dairy cows. © 2015 Taylor & Francis.


Gessner D.K.,Justus Liebig University | Koch C.,Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry | Romberg F.-J.,Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry | Winkler A.,Bingen University of Applied Sciences | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Dairy Science | Year: 2015

During the periparturient phase, cows are typically in an inflammation-like condition, and it has been suggested that inflammation associated with the development of stress of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in the liver contributes to the development of fatty liver syndrome and ketosis. In the present study, we investigated the hypothesis that feeding grape seed and grape marc meal extract (GSGME) as a plant extract rich in flavonoids attenuates inflammation and ER stress in the liver of dairy cows. Two groups of cows received either a total mixed ration as a control diet or the same total mixed ration supplemented with 1% of GSGME over the period from wk 3 prepartum to wk 9 postpartum. Dry matter intake during wk 3 to 9 postpartum was not different between the 2 groups. However, the cows fed the diet supplemented with GSGME had an increased milk yield and an increased daily milk protein yield. Cows supplemented with GSGME moreover had a significantly reduced mRNA abundancy of fibroblast growth factor (FGF) 21, a stress hormone induced by various stress conditions, in the liver in wk 1 and 3 postpartum. In contrast, mRNA abundances of a total of 3 genes involved in inflammation and 14 genes involved in ER stress response, as well as concentrations of triacylglycerols and cholesterol, in liver samples of wk 1 and 3 postpartum did not differ between the 2 groups. Overall, this study shows that supplementation of GSGME did not influence inflammation or ER stress in the liver but increased milk yield, an effect that could be due to effects on ruminal metabolism. © 2015 American Dairy Science Association.


PubMed | Justus Liebig University, Educational and Research Center for Animal Husbandry and Bingen University of Applied Sciences
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of dairy science | Year: 2015

During the periparturient phase, cows are typically in an inflammation-like condition, and it has been suggested that inflammation associated with the development of stress of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) in the liver contributes to the development of fatty liver syndrome and ketosis. In the present study, we investigated the hypothesis that feeding grape seed and grape marc meal extract (GSGME) as a plant extract rich in flavonoids attenuates inflammation and ER stress in the liver of dairy cows. Two groups of cows received either a total mixed ration as a control diet or the same total mixed ration supplemented with 1% of GSGME over the period from wk 3 prepartum to wk 9 postpartum. Dry matter intake during wk 3 to 9 postpartum was not different between the 2 groups. However, the cows fed the diet supplemented with GSGME had an increased milk yield and an increased daily milk protein yield. Cows supplemented with GSGME moreover had a significantly reduced mRNA abundancy of fibroblast growth factor (FGF) 21, a stress hormone induced by various stress conditions, in the liver in wk 1 and 3 postpartum. In contrast, mRNA abundances of a total of 3 genes involved in inflammation and 14 genes involved in ER stress response, as well as concentrations of triacylglycerols and cholesterol, in liver samples of wk 1 and 3 postpartum did not differ between the 2 groups. Overall, this study shows that supplementation of GSGME did not influence inflammation or ER stress in the liver but increased milk yield, an effect that could be due to effects on ruminal metabolism.

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