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Adaptive capability as indicated by behavioral and physiological responses, plasma HSP70 level, and PBMC HSP70 mRNA expression in Osmanabadi goats subjected to combined (heat and nutritional) stressors

Abstract

A study was conducted to assess the impact of heat and nutritional stress simultaneously on the adaptive capability as indicated by behavioral and physiological responses, plasma heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) level, and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) HSP70 gene expression in goats. Twenty-four adult Osmanabadi bucks (average body weight (BW) 16.0 kg) were used in the present study. The bucks were divided into four groups viz., C (n = 6; control), HS (n = 6; heat stress), NS (n = 6; nutritional stress), and CS (n = 6; combined stress). The study was conducted for a period of 45 days. C and HS bucks had ad libitum access to their feed while NS and CS bucks were under restricted feed (30 % intake of C bucks) to induce nutritional stress. The HS and CS bucks were exposed to solar radiation for 6 h a day between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. to induce heat stress. The data was analyzed using repeated measures analysis of variance. The standing time differed significantly (P < 0.01) between ad libitum fed groups (C and HS) and restricted feeding groups (NS and CS). The highest (P < 0.01) lying time was recorded in the CS group while the lowest in the C and HS groups. The highest (P < 0.01) drinking frequency was also recorded in the CS group. Water intake recorded was significantly (P < 0.01) higher in both the HS and CS groups. The highest respiration rate (RR), pulse rate (PR), and rectal temperature (RT) during the afternoon were also recorded in the CS group. Further, skin temperature of the head, flank, and scrotum during the afternoon was also higher (P < 0.01) in the CS group. In addition, both plasma HSP70 concentration and PBMC HSP70 messenger RNA (mRNA) transcript expression were also significantly (P < 0.01) higher in the CS group. It can be concluded from this study that when two stressors occur simultaneously, they may have severe impact on adaptive capabilities of Osmanabadi bucks as compared to that would occur individually. Further, the study indicated that lying time, drinking frequency, RR, RT, plasma HSP70, and PBMC HSP70 gene expression may act as ideal biological markers for assessing the impact of CS on adaptive capabilities in bucks.

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Acknowledgments

The authors are more grateful to Indian Council of Agricultural Research for funding this project and to the Director, ICAR-NIANP for providing the research facilities. We also appreciate K. Chaidanya and P. A. Abdul Niyas for their valuable help during the experiment.

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Correspondence to V. Sejian.

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Shilja, S., Sejian, V., Bagath, M. et al. Adaptive capability as indicated by behavioral and physiological responses, plasma HSP70 level, and PBMC HSP70 mRNA expression in Osmanabadi goats subjected to combined (heat and nutritional) stressors. Int J Biometeorol 60, 1311–1323 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00484-015-1124-5

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Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Combined stress
  • Behavior
  • Goat
  • Physiological response
  • HSP70
  • Skin temperature