Acta Vet. Brno 2008, 77: 51-57

Acute Phase Proteins and Variables of Protein Metabolism in Dairy Cows during the Pre- and Postpartal Period

Cs. Tóthová, O. Nagy, H. Seidel, J. Konvičná, Z. Farkašová, G. Kováč

II. Clinical Department for Internal Diseases, University of Veterinary Medicine, Košice, Slovak Republic

Received July 13, 2007
Accepted December 19, 2007

The objective of the present study was to compare the concentrations of acute phase proteins and selected variables of protein metabolism in dairy cows of the Slovak Spotted breed from 4 weeks before parturition to 10 weeks after parturition. Acute phase proteins - haptoglobin (Hp) and serum amyloid A (SAA) - and variables of protein metabolism - total proteins, albumin, urea, creatinine, total immunoglobulins - were evaluated in blood serum. Significant differences were found in average values of the Hp and SAA concentrations in several groups during the monitored period (P < 0.05 and P < 0.001, respectively). The Hp and SAA concentrations in cows during the early postparturient period were significantly higher compared with the later postparturient period. Throughout the monitored time we found differences in mean values of total proteins (P < 0.001), urea (P < 0.001), and total immunoglobulins (P < 0.05). The concentrations of albumin decreased progressively in the postparturient period until 4 weeks after parturition. In the assessment of correlations between the monitored variables in the mentioned period we found significant correlations between Hp and SAA (r = 0.916; P < 0.001), total proteins and urea (r = 0.668; P < 0.05), total proteins and total immunoglobulins (r = 0.827; P < 0.01), and between total immunoglobulins and urea (r = 0.899; P < 0.001). The above mentioned results indicate that in the time around parturition there are significant changes in concentrations of acute phase proteins, as well as in the whole protein metabolism of dairy cows. These facts suggest that the postparturient period is a critical biological phase, throughout which there is the highest incidence of metabolic disorders.