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Using domperidone to induce and sustain hyperprolactinemia in late-pregnant gilts

Farmer, C., Mathews, A.T., Hovey, R.C.
Domestic animal endocrinology 2019 v.66 pp. 14-20
antagonists, blood, blood sampling, canola oil, dopamine receptors, emulsions, gilts, mammary development, milk yield, pregnancy, prolactin, sows
Prolactin controls mammary development as well as the lactogenic and galactopoietic processes in sows and increasing prolactin during gestation can augment milk yield. The dopamine receptor antagonist domperidone can increase circulating prolactin concentrations in pigs, but the ideal dose to achieve sustained hyperprolactinemia remains unknown. An experiment was performed to develop a protocol for using domperidone in studies of rapid and sustained hyperprolactinemia in late-pregnant gilts. On day 90 of gestation, gilts were divided into 4 groups: (1) intramuscular (IM) injections of canola oil (3 mL, controls [CTL], n = 9), (2) IM injections with 0.1 mg/kg BW of domperidone (low [LO], n = 8), (3) IM injections with 0.5 mg/kg BW of domperidone (medium [ME], n = 11), and (4) IM injections with 1.0 mg/kg BW of domperidone (high [HI], n = 11). Injections were given daily at 8:05 from days 90 to 109 of gestation. Treated gilts also received domperidone per os (0.5 mg/kg BW) at 8:00 and 20:00 on days 89, 90, and 91 of gestation. Three jugular blood samples were collected from all gilts at 6-h intervals on days 89, 90, and 91 of gestation, then twice daily on days 92, 93, and 94. Thereafter, samples were obtained at 8:00 every other day until day 114 of gestation. Blood was sampled serially from 9 CTL and 11 HI gilts on days 89 and 94 of gestation. On day 89 of gestation, prolactin concentrations for LO, ME, and HI gilts increased within 6 h of domperidone per os (P < 0.001). From days 89 until 93 of gestation, the area under the curve (AUC) for LO, ME, and HI gilts was greater than that for CTL gilts (P < 0.001), whereas from days 89 until 114, ME and HI gilts had greater AUC than CTL and LO gilts (P < 0.05). Results demonstrate that the combination of per os treatment with IM injections of 0.5 mg/kg of domperidone in an oil emulsion leads to the rapid and sustained release of prolactin over 24 d in late-pregnant gilts. Higher doses of domperidone failed to further increase circulating prolactin levels. These findings provide a useful strategy to induce sustained hyperprolactinemia in late-pregnant gilts.