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Effects of oral caffeine administration to sows with induced parturition on hypoxia in piglets
- Superchi, Paola, Mazzoni, Claudio, Zanardelli, Paola, Piancastelli, Chiara, Zambini, Ernesto Mario, Beretti, Valentino, Sabbioni, Alberto
- Livestock science 2013 v.157 no.1 pp. 372-377
- biopterin, body weight, caffeine, diet, farrowing, hypoxia, oral administration, oxytocin, piglets, pregnancy, protective effect, sows, viability
- To counteract the effects of perinatal hypoxia in piglets, the oral administration of caffeine to sows with induced parturition was evaluated. On day 113 of gestation 9 sows received 27mg/kg body weight (BW) of caffeine mixed with 200g of standard diet. The same amount of feed without the addition of caffeine was administered to 9 control sows. Additionally, on day 113 of gestation, all sows were treated by two injections in the perianal area of 1mg of alfaprostol (at 8:00 am and 14:00 pm), and on the morning of farrowing by 14IU of oxytocin in the perianal area. Caffeine did not affect BW of piglets and size of litters; however piglets from treated sows showed a higher capacity to adapt to extra-uterine life. Particularly, they showed a greater thermoregulatory ability (P<0.001) and a higher percentage of viability score≥7 compared to piglets from control sows (92% vs. 75%, respectively; P=0.030). Caffeine furthermore reduced the frequency of high serum biopterin values (>80nmol/L) in piglets born from treated sows (P=0.001). In conclusion, the caffeine orally administered to sows with induced parturition showed a protective effect on the consequences of neonatal hypoxia in tissue ischemia–reperfusion injury in piglets.