Acta Vet. Brno 2017, 86: 231-238

Effects of niacin supplementation on the insulin resistance in Holstein cows during early lactation

Talija Hristovska1, Marko R. Cincović2, Branislava Belić2, Dragica Stojanović2, Milanka Jezdimirović3, Radojica Đoković4, Bojan Toholj2

1St. Clement of Ohrid University of Bitola, Veterinary Faculty, Bitola, Macedonia
2University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Agriculture, Department of Veterinary Medicine, Novi Sad, Serbia
3University of Belgrade, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Belgrade, Serbia
4University of Kragujevac, Faculty of Agronomy, Kragujevac, Serbia

Received February 23, 2017
Accepted October 2, 2017

Insulin resistance in early lactation includes low glucose concentration, low insulin release and responsiveness and high lipolysis. Niacin is important antilipolytic agent and leads to increase glucose and insulin concentration. The objectives of this study were to determine the influence of niacin on the insulin resistance in cows during early lactation using the difference of value and regression analysis between blood non-esterified fatty acid (NEFA), glucose and insulin concentrations, revised quantitative insulin sensitivity check index and glucose-to-insulin ratio. Niacin supplementation led to a decrease of NEFA concentration and an increase of glucose and insulin concentrations during the first three weeks after calving. Cows in the niacin group which were more resistant to insulin showed higher concentrations of non-esterified fatty acid in comparison with more sensitive cows from the same group, but still lower than the control. The regression analyses suggest the following characteristics of cows supplemented with niacin in comparison with the control group: the insulin response to glucose was more intense; the antilipolytic effect of insulin was lower; insulin efficiency expressed as glucose-to-insulin ratio increase with a decrease in NEFA. The metabolic changes due to niacin supplementation showed a dual influence on the insulin resistance in dairy cows during early lactation: decreased NEFA concentrations led to a decrease in the insulin resistance (due to an increase in insulin efficiency and insulin sensitivity index), but increased concentrations of insulin and glucose possibly caused an increase in the insulin resistance in dairy cows (due to lower insulin sensitivity index and possibly lower antilipolytic effects of insulin).


This research was supported by the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development of Serbia, Project No. TR31062.


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