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Effect of intravenous or oral sodium chlorate administration on the fecal shedding of Escherichia coli in sheep

D. J. Smith, J. B. Taylor, M. West, G. Herges
Journal of animal science 2013 v.91 pp. 5962-5969
Escherichia coli, blood, excretion, feces, gastrointestinal system, hematocrit, intravenous injection, lambs, oral administration, sodium chlorate, wethers
The effect of gavage or intravenous (i.v.) administration of sodium chlorate salts on the fecal shedding of generic Escherichia coli in wether lambs was studied. To this end, 9 lambs (27 ± 2.5 kg) were administered 150 mg NaClO3/kg BW by gavage or i.v. infusion in a crossover design with saline-dosed controls. The crossover design allowed each animal to receive each treatment during 1 of 3 trial periods, resulting in 9 observations for each treatment. Immediately before and subsequent to dosing, jugular blood and rectal fecal samples were collected at 4, 8, 16, 24, and 36 h. Endpoints measured were fecal generic E. coli concentrations, blood packed cell volume (PCV), blood methemoglobin concentration, and serum and fecal sodium chlorate concentrations. Sodium chlorate had no effects (P > 0.05) on blood PVC or methemoglobin. Fecal generic E. coli concentrations were decreased (P < 0.05) approximately 2 log units (99%) relative to controls 16 and 24 h after sodium chlorate infusion and 24 h after sodium chlorate gavage. Within and across time and treatment, fecal chlorate concentrations were highly variable for both gavage and i.v. lambs. Average fecal sodium chlorate concentrations never exceeded 100 μg/g and were typically less than 60 μg/g from 4 to 24 h after dosing. Times of maximal average fecal sodium chlorate concentration did not correspond with times of lowered average generic E. coli concentrations. Within route of administration, serum sodium chlorate concentrations were greatest (P < 0.01) 4 h after dosing; at the same time point, serum chlorate was greater (P < 0.01) in i.v.-dosed lambs than gavaged lambs but not at 16 or 24 h (P > 0.05). At 8 h, serum chlorate concentrations of gavaged lambs were greater (P < 0.05) than in i.v.-dosed lambs. Serum chlorate data are consistent with earlier studies indicating very rapid transfer of orally dosed chlorate to systemic circulation, and fecal chlorate data are consistent with earlier data showing the excretion of low to marginal concentrations of sodium chlorate in orally dosed animals. Efficacy of sodium chlorate at reducing fecal E. coli concentrations after i.v. infusion suggests that low concentrations of chlorate in gastrointestinal contents, delivered by biliary excretion, intestinal cell sloughing, or simple diffusion, are effective at reducing fecal E. coli levels. Alternatively, chlorate could be eliciting systemic effects that influence fecal E. coli populations.