Comparative Clinical Pathology

, Volume 22, Issue 2, pp 227–232 | Cite as

Identifying relationships among acute phase proteins (haptoglobin, serum amyloid A, fibrinogen, ceruloplasmin) and clinical findings in dairy calf diarrhea

  • Ali HajimohammadiEmail author
  • Saeed Nazifi
  • Maryam Ansari-Lari
  • Mohammad Reza Khoshmanzar
  • Saeed Momeni Bigdeli
Original Article


The acute phase response is a nonspecific inflammatory reaction of the host that occurs shortly after any tissue injury. The response includes changes in the concentration of plasma proteins called acute phase proteins (APPs). Calf diarrhea is an important disease that occurs in association with the interaction of various infectious agents and calf susceptibility. The economic losses is associated with death loss and treatment costs, reduction of live weight gain, and reduction of productive life span, which may be considerable. The aim of the present study was to identify relationships among APPs in calves with diarrhea in the different clinical features. Holstein calves (50) within 1 day to 4 months old with signs of diarrhea and healthy calves (40) with similar age and sex were selected. Standard clinical examinations and also dehydration degree were carried out on each calf and were recorded. Calves with clinical signs of diarrhea were divided in different groups based on the severity of the clinical findings, fever and degree of dehydration. Blood samples were taken from the jugular vein from all calves into vacutainers containing ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) for separating plasma and without EDTA for serum biochemical analysis. APP [haptoglobin (Hp), serum amyloid A (SAA), fibrinogen (Fib), and ceruloplasmin (Cp)] concentrations were measured using validated standard methods. The results indicated a significant increases in APPs in diarrheic calves which was most obvious in Hp and SAA (P < 0.001). Calves with severe clinical signs of diarrhea had a significant increases in their Hp and SAA (P < 0.001) compared to calves with moderate or without systemic clinical signs. Diarrheic calves with fever compared to diarrheic calves without fever had a significant increases in their Hp and SAA (P < 0.01). Also, diarrheic calves with severe dehydration compared to diarrheic calves with mild and moderate dehydration had significant increases in Hp and SAA (P < 0.05), and these parameters (Hp, SAA, Fib, and Cp) among calves with mild and moderate dehydration had no significant changes. Our results indicated that monitoring the APP responses in diarrheic calves with different clinical signs could be useful as prognostic tools and facilitate treatment decisions.


Acute phase proteins Diarrheic calves Clinical signs 


  1. Alsemgeest S, Kalsbeek H, Wensing T, Koeman J, Van Ederen A, Gruys E (1994) Concentrations of serum amyloid-A (SAA) and haptoglobin (HP) as parameters of inflammatory diseases in cattle. Vet Q 16:21PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Alsemgeest S, Lambooy I, Wierenga H, Dieleman S, Meerkerk B, Van Ederen A, Niewold TA (1995) Influence of physical stress on the plasma concentration of serum amyloid-A (SAA) and haptoglobin (Hp) in calves. Vet Q 17:9PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Arthington J, Eicher S, Kunkle W, Martin F (2003) Effect of transportation and commingling on the acute-phase protein response, growth, and feed intake of newly weaned beef calves. J Anim Sci 81:1120PubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Bremner K (1964) Studies on haptoglobin and haemopexin in the plasma of cattle. Aust J Exp Biol Med Sci 42:643–656PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Carter JN, Meredith GL, Montelongo M, Gill DR, Krehbiel CR, Payton ME, Confer AW (2002) Relationship of vitamin E supplementation and antimicrobial treatment with acute-phase protein responses in cattle affected by naturally acquired respiratory tract disease. Am J Vet Res 63:1111–1117PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Cerón JJ, Eckersall PD, Martínez Subiela S (2005) Acute phase proteins in dogs and cats: current knowledge and future perspectives. Vet Clin Pathol 34:85–99PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Chassagne M, Barnouin J, Chacornac J (1998) Biological predictors for early clinical mastitis occurrence in Holstein cows under field conditions in France. Prev Vet Med 35:29–38PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Conner J, Eckersall P, Wiseman A, Aitchison T, Douglas T (1988) Bovine acute phase response following turpentine injection. Res Vet Sci 44:82PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Conner J, Eckersall P, Wiseman A, Bain R, Douglas T (1989) Acute phase response in calves following infection with Pasteurella haemolytica, Ostertagia ostertagi and endotoxin administration. Res Vet Sci 47:203PubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Constable P, Thomas E, Boisrame B (2001) Comparison of two oral electrolyte solutions for the treatment of dehydrated calves with experimentally-induced diarrhoea. Vet J 162:129–140PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Deignan T, Alwan A, Kelly J, McNair J, Warren T, O’Farrelly C (2000) Serum haptoglobin: an objective indicator of experimentally-induced Salmonella infection in calves. Res Vet Sci 69:153–158PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Eckersall P (2000) Recent advances and future prospects for the use of acute phase proteins as markers of disease in animals. Rev Méd Vét 151:577–584Google Scholar
  13. Eckersall P, Bell R (2010) Acute phase proteins: biomarkers of infection and inflammation in veterinary medicine. Vet J 185:23–27PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Eckersall P, Conner J (1988) Bovine and canine acute phase proteins. Vet Res Commun 12:169–178PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Feldman BF, Zinkl JG, Schalm OW (2000) Schalm’s veterinary hematology. Wiley-BlackwellGoogle Scholar
  16. Foster D, Smith GW (2009) Pathophysiology of diarrhea in calves. Veterinary clinics of North America. Food Anim Pract 25:13–36CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Gånheim C, Hulten C, Carlsson U, Kindahl H, Niskanen R, Waller KP (2003) The acute phase response in calves experimentally infected with bovine viral diarrhoea virus and/or Mannheimia haemolytica. J Vet Med Ser B 50:183–190CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gånheim C, Höglund J, Waller KP (2004) Acute phase proteins in response to Dictyocaulus viviparus infection in calves. Acta Vet Scand 45:1–8CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Godson DL, Campos M, Attah-Poku SK, Redmond MJ, Cordeiro DM, Sethi MS, Harland RJ, Babiuk LA (1996) Serum haptoglobin as an indicator of the acute phase response in bovine respiratory disease. Vet Immun Immunopathol 51:277–292CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Hart BL (1988) Biological basis of the behavior of sick animals. Neurosci Biobehav Rev 12:123–137PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Heegaard PMH, Godson DL, Toussaint MJM, Tjørnehøj K, Larsen LE, Viuff B, Rønsholt L (2000) The acute phase response of haptoglobin and serum amyloid A (SAA) in cattle undergoing experimental infection with bovine respiratory syncytial virus. Vet Immun Immunopathol 77:151–159CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Horadagoda A, Eckersall P, Hodgson J, Gibbs H, Moon G (1994) Immediate responses in serum tnf [alpha] and acute phase protein concentrations to infection with Pasteurella haemolytica A1 in calves. Res Vet Sci 57:129–132PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Horadagoda N, Knox K, Gibbs H, Reid S, Horadagoda A, Edwards S, Eckersall P (1999) Acute phase proteins in cattle: discrimination between acute and chronic inflammation. Vet Rec 144:437PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Karreman H, Wentink G, Wensing T (2000) Using serum amyloid A to screen dairy cows for sub-clinical inflammation. Vet Q 22:175–178PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kent J (1992) Acute phase proteins: their use in veterinary diagnosis. Br Vet J (UK)Google Scholar
  26. Larson L, Owen F, Albright J, Appleman R, Lamb R, Muller L (1977) Guidelines Toward more uniformity in measuring and reporting calf experimental data 1. J Dairy Sci 60:989–991CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. McSherry B, Horney F (1970) Plasma fibrinogen levels in normal and sick cows. Can J Comp Med 34:191PubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Murata H, Shimada N, Yoshioka M (2004) Current research on acute phase proteins in veterinary diagnosis: an overview. Vet J 168:28–40PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Nazifi S, Razavi S, Esmailnejad Z, Gheisari H (2009) Study on acute phase proteins (haptoglobin, serum amyloid A, fibrinogen, and ceruloplasmin) changes and their diagnostic values in bovine tropical theileriosis. Parasitol Res 105:41–46PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Petersen HH, Nielsen JP, Heegaard PMH (2004) Application of acute phase protein measurements in veterinary clinical chemistry. Vet Res 35:163–187PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Pfeffer A, Rogers K, O’keeffe L, Osborn P (1993) Acute phase protein response, food intake, liveweight change and lesions following intrathoracic injection of yeast in sheep. Res Vet Sci 55:360–366PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Radostits OM, Gay CC, Hinchcliff KW, Constable PD (2007) Veterinary Medicine: A textbook of the diseases of cattle, horses, sheep, pigs and goats. Saunders Elsevier Philadelphia, PAGoogle Scholar
  33. Saini P, Riaz M, Webert D, Eckersall P, Young C, Stanker L, Chakrabarti E, Judkins J (1998) Development of a simple enzyme immunoassay for blood haptoglobin concentration in cattle and its application in improving food safety. Am J Vet Res 59:1101PubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. Sheldon I, Noakes D, Rycroft A, Dobson H (2001) Acute phase protein responses to uterine bacterial contamination in caftle after calving. Vet Rec 148:172PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Skinner J, Brown R, Roberts L (1991) Bovine haptoglobin response in clinically defined field conditions. Vet Rec 128:147PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Sunderman FW Jr, Nomoto S (1970) Measurement of human serum ceruloplasmin by its p-phenylenediamine oxidase activity. Clin Chem 16:903PubMedGoogle Scholar
  37. Svensson C, Liberg P, Hultgren J (2007) Evaluating the efficacy of serum haptoglobin concentration as an indicator of respiratory-tract disease in dairy calves. Vet J 174:288–294PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Thrall MA, Baker DC, Lassen ED (2004) Veterinary hematology and clinical chemistry. Wiley-BlackwellGoogle Scholar
  39. Tietz NW, Burtis CA, Ashwood ER, Bruns DE (2006) Tietz textbook of clinical chemistry and molecular diagnostics. Elsevier SaundersGoogle Scholar
  40. Todd C, Millman S, McKnight D, Duffield T, Leslie K (2010) Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug therapy for neonatal calf diarrhea complex: effects on calf performance. J Anim Sci 88:2019PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Wittum T, Young C, Stanker L, Griffin D, Perino L, Littledike E (1996) Haptoglobin response to clinical respiratory tract disease in feedlot cattle. Am J Vet Res 57:646PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ali Hajimohammadi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Saeed Nazifi
    • 1
  • Maryam Ansari-Lari
    • 2
  • Mohammad Reza Khoshmanzar
    • 3
  • Saeed Momeni Bigdeli
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Studies, School of Veterinary MedicineShiraz UniversityShirazIran
  2. 2.Department of Food Hygiene and Public Health, School of Veterinary MedicineShiraz UniversityShirazIran
  3. 3.Graduate of School of Veterinary MedicineShiraz UniversityShirazIran
  4. 4.Farzis Milk and Meat ComplexShirazIran

Personalised recommendations