Acute phase proteins in cows induced with SARA; Research to the response of the acute phase protein with a subacute rumen acidosis in cows caused by too little structure in the feed
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Subacute rumen acidosis (SARA) is considered to be one of the most important nutritional diseases in dairy cattle. There have been a lot of studies into how SARA is induced by changing the diet abruptly. For instance some studies examined the effects when the concentration of feed was increased in comparison to the roughage. In other researches the particle size of alfalfa was studied. The objective of this study was “to determine the response of acute phase proteins on subacute rumen acidosis, as caused by reducing the physical structure of the diet of dairy cows”. To do this the particle size of the diet was changed from 20 cm to 5 cm in grass silage and from 5 cm. to 1 cm. in wheat straw. This study included two groups of three cows, which had diet change at different times. Before and after the diet change the rumen pH, the rumen LPS concentration and the acute phase proteins (APP) were measured. Next to that several performances of the cows were measured. These included: feed intake, water intake, rumination time, rumen motility, milk yield and milk composition. No changes were seen after the diet change in all these parameters. Only one cow displayed an increase in APP, but its rumen LPS was not increased at the same time and the pH was not recorded, due to failing of the equipment. So it might be possible that the acute phase response was caused by an inflammation in another part of the body. All in all the diet change did not cause SARA in the investigated cows according to the measurements. Recommendations for future studies on this object are, to have a bigger diet change, take more cows and measure the APP every day instead of every three days. This way changes due to measurement mistakes can be ruled out.