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Effects of duration of moderate increases in grain feeding on endotoxins in the digestive tract and acute phase proteins in peripheral blood of yearling calves

Plaizier, J.C., Li, S., Le Sciellour, M., Schurmann, B.L., Górka, P., Penner, G.B.
Journal of dairy science 2014 v.97 no.11 pp. 7076-7084
European Union, Holstein, abomasum, acute phase proteins, amyloid, barley, blood sampling, blood serum, calves, cecum, colon, diet, digesta, digestive tract, endotoxins, haptoglobins, hay, ileum, inflammation, jejunum, jugular vein, lipopolysaccharides, rectum, rumen fluids, slaughter, steers, yearlings
Effects of duration of grain feeding on the concentration of endotoxic lipopolysaccharide (LPS) in digesta throughout the digestive tract and on acute phase proteins and LPS in peripheral blood were determined in Holstein yearling calves. Twenty-five Holstein yearling steer calves received either a forage-based diet containing 92% hay and 8% of a mineral and vitamin pellet on a dry matter basis (CON) or a moderate-grain diet, obtained by replacing 41.5% of the hay in the forage-based diet with barley grain, for 3 (MG3), 7 (MG7), 14 (MG14), or 21 d (MG21) before slaughter. Immediately before slaughter, blood samples were collected from the jugular vein. Immediately after slaughter, digesta samples were collected from the rumen, jejunum, ileum, cecum, colon, and rectum. Rumen liquid digesta, digesta from the intestines, and peripheral blood plasma were analyzed for LPS. Peripheral blood plasma and serum were analyzed for the acute phase proteins amyloid A, haptoglobin, and LPS-binding protein. Feeding the grain diet increased the LPS concentration in rumen fluid linearly from 15,488 endotoxin units (EU)/mL for CON to 70,146 EU/mL for MG7. Concentrations of LPS in rumen fluid in MG14 and MG21 were 61,944 and 56,234 EU/mL, respectively, and did not differ. The LPS concentrations in jejunal digesta were much lower than that in digesta elsewhere in the digestive tract, which suggests that ruminal LPS is broken down in the abomasum or proximal jejunum. The concentration of digesta LPS in the ileum was higher than that of digesta elsewhere in the intestines and similar to that in rumen fluid. The duration of grain feeding increased the LPS concentration in digesta in the ileum and cecum and tended to increase that in the colon cubically. Concentrations of LPS in this part of the digestive tract were highest in the MG3 and MG21 groups. The highest concentrations of LPS in digesta in the cecum, colon, and rectum were 3.7, 3.8, and 5.6 times higher than that in CON, respectively. Grain feeding and the increase in LPS in digesta were not accompanied by an acute phase response or a detectable concentration of LPS in peripheral blood. The absence of LPS in peripheral blood and the lack of increase in acute phase proteins indicated that the grain feeding protocol used in the current study and the accompanying changes in LPS concentrations of the digesta did not result in systemic inflammation.