TitleEffects of feeding pregnant beef cows selenium-enriched alfalfa hay on passive transfer of ovalbumin in their newborn calves.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsK Apperson, D, Vorachek, WR, Dolan, BP, Bobe, G, Pirelli, GJ, Hall, JA
JournalJ Trace Elem Med Biol
Date Published2018 Dec
KeywordsAnimal Feed, Animals, Animals, Newborn, Cattle, Female, Medicago sativa, Ovalbumin, Pregnancy

Intestinal absorption of immunoglobulins is critical for health and survival of newborn calves because there is no transfer of immunoglobulins in utero. The objective of this study was to determine if feeding beef cows Se-enriched alfalfa hay during the last trimester of gestation improves passive transfer of ovalbumin (OVA), a surrogate protein marker for IgG absorption. Control cows (n = 15) were fed non-Se-fortified alfalfa hay (5.3 mg Se/head daily) plus a mineral supplement containing inorganic Se (3 mg Se/head daily). Med-Se (n = 15) and High-Se cows (n = 15) were fed Se-biofortified alfalfa hay (27.6 and 57.5 mg Se/head daily, respectively); both groups received mineral supplement without added Se. Calves were randomly assigned to receive orally administered OVA at 12, 24, or 36 h of age. Calves that received their oral dose of OVA at 12 h of age had higher serum OVA concentrations across the first 48 h of life if born to High-Se cows compared to calves born to Control cows (P = 0.05), with intermediate values for calves born to Med-Se cows. Our results, using OVA as a model for passive transfer, suggest that if calves do not receive adequate colostrum to reach maximum pinocytosis, then supranutritional Se supplementation in beef cattle may improve passive transfer in their calves, if calves receive colostrum within the first 12 h of age.

Alternate JournalJ Trace Elem Med Biol
PubMed ID29929926
PubMed Central IDPMC7127647