Acta Vet. Brno 2017, 86: 67-74

Changes of biochemical environment and body weight in healthy periparturient Lipizzan mares

Vladimír Hura1, František Novotný1, Igor Valocký1, Martin Boldižár1, Ján Bílek1, Petra Horňáková1, Zuzana Vilhanová1, Slavomír Horňák2, Vladimír Petrovič3

1University of Veterinary Medicine and Pharmacy, Clinic of Horses, Košice, Slovak Republic
2University of Veterinary Medicine and Pharmacy, Clinic of Small Animals, Košice, Slovak Republic
3University of Veterinary Medicine and Pharmacy, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, Košice, Slovak Republic

Received September 20, 2016
Accepted March 3, 2017

The aims of this study were to determine the concentrations of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, chlorine, potassium, sodium, urea, total cholesterol, triacylglycerols, non-esterified fatty acids, total protein, creatinine, total bilirubin, aspartate aminotransferase, insulin, insulin growth factor 1, and glucose in the blood serum and to monitor the body weight changes in nine clinically healthy Lipizzan mares at weekly intervals within 2 weeks before and 2 weeks after the parturition. A significant body weight loss (P < 0.01) was found in the mares after the foaling. The peak of insulin growth factor 1 concentration in serum was reached at the day of parturition and similar patterns were revealed for the concentrations of insulin and glucose. After parturition, all these indices were significantly decreased. The concentrations of phosphorus and triacylglycerols were decreased, while the concentrations of potassium and sodium were increased at the day of parturition. Moreover, the concentration of non-esterified fatty acids was increased at the day of parturition (P < 0.05) with a tendency to higher values even on the 7th day postpartum. Other studied indexes remained relatively stable throughout the transition period. We can conclude that periparturient mares face some degree of negative energy balance with concomitant significant homeostatic and homeorhetic changes. For this reason, our results can be used as a basis for reference values and a diagnostic tool to examine the health status in horses during the transition period.


This work was supported by VEGA Scientific Grant No. 1/0366/15 from the Ministry of Education of the Slovak Republic.


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