Author(s): Schroedl W, Jaekel L, Krueger M
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Abstract Several milk proteins are very important for immunological defense and can be absorbed in the intestine of calves in the first hours after birth. The influence of colostrum intake and the effect of additional lactulose application on the concentration of C-reactive protein (CRP) in blood were investigated. The CRP is known as a mediator of innate immunity. Results were compared to the bovine acute phase protein haptoglobin, and to lactalbumin, lactoferrin, and immunoglobulins in plasma from calves. After colostrum intake, the concentration of most proteins were strongly increased. The data show, for the first time, a significant increase of CRP in the blood of calves 1 d after colostrum intake (nonlactulose group, n = 10), and an even more significant increase in CRP concentration (1 d postpartum) was measured in the group of animals with additional application of lactulose (lactulose group, n = 10) when compared to the nonlactulose group. In an in vitro assay with the plasma of these animals, an increased bactericidal activity was detected against Morganella morganii (1 d postpartum) in both groups, but again a higher activity occurred in the lactulose group. The results of these investigations emphasize the importance of colostrum intake during the first hours after birth for the defense potential of newborn calves. In addition, lactulose may have a positive effect in the period of passive transfer of colostrum proteins and in the immune defense.
This article was published in J Dairy Sci
and referenced in Journal of Clinical Toxicology