Milk Yield and Immune Response of Periparturient and Early Lactation Friesian Cows Fed Diets Supplemented with a High Level of Amino-acid Chelated Chromium

  • Terramoccia, S. (C.R.A. Istituto Sperimentale per la Zootecnia) ;
  • Bartocci, S. (C.R.A. Istituto Sperimentale per la Zootecnia) ;
  • Lillini, E. (Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Regioni Lazio e Toscana)
  • Received : 2004.05.25
  • Accepted : 2005.04.06
  • Published : 2005.08.01


The trial was carried out on twenty-one Friesian cows at the end of eight months gestation, nine multiparous and twelve primiparous; allocated into three groups (1 control, 2 and 3 experimental). The same diet was administred to all three groups before partum (12.8 kg DM/head/day) and after partum (18.8 kg DM/head/day). The cows in groups 2 and 3 received two different daily quantities of amino-acid chelated chromium (0.6 and 1.2 mg Cr/kg DM) from 4 weeks prior to presumed parturition to 6 weeks after. The milk yield control was carried out at 15, 30, 42 and 60 days. All animals were immunised two weeks prior to the presumed parturition and two weeks after with the following antigens: ovalbumin and brucellergene. Blood samples were collected weekly to monitor humoral and cell-mediated immune responses. When analysing the results of antibody immunity (ovalbumin) in the sixth blood collection both treated groups significantly increased compared to group 1 (0.5230 and 0.4536 vs. 0.1812 OD; p<0.05). The results of the cell-mediated immune response (brucellergene) had significant differences (p<0.10) in correspondence to the third (between group 2 and control) and the fifth (between groups 3 and 2) blood collection. Significant differences in fat corrected milk were observed at 42 days between group 3 and the other two groups (31.01 vs. 26.99 and 28.66 kg/d, p<0.05) and at 60 days between group 3 and control (30.88 vs. 26.69 kg/d, p<0.05). Before partum and at partum a positive immune response was obtained with a lower dose of chromium. After partum a positive immune response, anti-OVA indicator, was obtained with the higher dose of chromium while, $\gamma$-IFN indicator, with the lower dose. A significant increase of the milk yield resulted at both 42 and 60 days with the highest level of chromium.


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