The present study aimed to evaluate the effects of hepatoprotective agents added to diets containing different energy sources on the metabolic status of lactating dairy cows in confinement. Sixteen Holstein × Gir crossbred midlactation cows with a body weight of 553 ± 85 kg were included in this feeding trial. These animals were arranged in a 4 × 4 Latin square experimental design. A 2 × 2 factorial arrangement was employed in this feeding experiment. Experimental treatments consisted of the administration of diets supplemented with a hepatoprotectant and diets without hepatoprotectant. These diets contained varying amounts of ground corn or citrus pulp as energy sources. Serum markers for energy metabolism and proteins were evaluated and liver enzymes were measured. Blood samples were collected in the morning before (0 h) and 4 h after the animals were fed these diets. There was no interaction between the hepatoprotective agent and the dietary energy sources for the metabolic status variables. Ground corn as an energy source yielded higher serum concentrations of glucose, HDL (high-density lipoprotein) cholesterol, and globulins, whereas b-hydroxybutyrate (BHB), non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA), total cholesterol, albumin, and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) yielded the highest concentrations in diets containing citrus pulp. There was interaction between time and hepatoprotective agent in serum LDL (low-density lipoprotein) cholesterol concentration. The present study shows that ground corn diets increased the synthesis of glucogenic nutrients, whereas citrus pulp used as an energy source altered the lipid status of lactating cows. The hepatoprotective agent increased postprandial serum LDL cholesterol levels.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
AOAC 2005. Official methods of analysis. 16th edn., (Association of Official Analytical Chemists: Washington, DC).
Bauchart, D., 1993. Lipid absorption and transport in ruminants. Journal of Dairy Science, 76 (12), 3864-3881.
Cavestany, D., Blanc, J.E., Kulcsar, M., Uriarte, G., Chilibroste, P., Meikle, A. and Krall, E., 2005. Studies of the transition cow under a pasture-based milk production system: metabolic profiles. Journal of Veterinary Medicine Series A, 52 (1), 1-7.
Ferraretto, L.F., 2017. Impact of starch content and digestibility in dairy cattle diets. 28th Annual Florida Ruminant Nutrition Symposium, pp. 112-123.
Ferrari, V.B., Cônsolo, N.R.B., Rodriguez, F., Penso, J.F., Frasseto, M.O. and Silva, L.F.P., 2016. 1526 Partial replacement of ground corn by citrus pulp or steam-flaked corn fed at two concentrate levels on rumen parameters and kinetics. Journal of Animal Science, 94 (suppl_5), 741-741.
Friedewald, W.T., Levy, R.I. and Fredrickson, D.S., 1972. Estimation of the concentration of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol in plasma, without use of the preparative ultracentrifuge. Clinical chemistry, 18 (6), 499-502.
Girish, C. and Pradhan, S.C., 2017. Herbal drugs on the liver. Liver Pathophysiology. pp. 605-620.
Herrick, K.J., Hippen, A.R., Kalscheur, K.F., Schingoethe, D.J., Casper, D.P., Moreland, S.C. and Van Eys, J.E., 2017. Single-dose infusion of sodium butyrate, but not lactose, increases plasma β-hydroxybutyrate and insulin in lactating dairy cows. Journal of dairy science, 100 (1), 757-768.
Kaneko, J.J., Harvey, J.W. and Bruss, M.L., 2008. Clinical biochemistry of domestic animals. 6nd edn, Academic press, Burlington MA, EUA.
Kessler, E.C., Gross, J.J., Bruckmaier, R.M. and Albrecht, C., 2014. Cholesterol metabolism, transport, and hepatic regulation in dairy cows during transition and early lactation. Journal of dairy science, 97 (9), 5481-5490.
Lashkari, S., Taghizadeh, A., Paya, H. and Jensen, S.K., 2017. Growth performance, nutrient digestibility and blood parameters of fattening lambs fed diet replacing corn with orange pulp. Spanish journal of agricultural research, 15 (1), 1-7.
Leiva, T., Cooke, R.F., Brandão, A.P., Pardelli, U., Rodrigues, R.O., Corrá, F.N. and Vasconcelos, J.L.M., 2017. Effects of concentrate type and chromium propionate on insulin sensitivity, productive and reproductive parameters of lactating dairy cows consuming excessive energy. Animal, 11 (3), 436-444.
National Research Council, 2001. Nutrient requirements of dairy cattle. 6nd edn, National Academies Press, Washinton DC, EUA.
Nichols, K., Dijkstra, J., Van Laar, H., Pacheco, S., van Valenberg, H.J. and Bannink, A., 2019. Energy and nitrogen partitioning in dairy cows at low or high metabolizable protein levels is affected differently by postrumen glucogenic and lipogenic substrates. Journal of dairy science, 102, 395-412.
Oltramari, C.E., Nápoles, G.G.O., De Paula, M.R., Silva, J.T., Gallo, M.P.C., Soares, M.C. and Bittar, C.M.M., 2018. Performance and metabolism of dairy calves fed starter feed containing citrus pulp as a replacement for corn. Animal Production Science, 58 (3), 561-567.
Patra, A.K., 2015. Urea/ammonia metabolism in the rumen and toxicity in ruminants. Rumen Microbiology: from evolution to revolution. pp. 329-341.
Puppel, K. and Kuczyńska, B., 2016. Metabolic profiles of cow’s blood; a review. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, 96 (13), 4321-4328.
Rojas-Morales, P., Tapia, E. and Pedraza-Chaverri, J., 2016. β-Hydroxybutyrate: a signaling metabolite in starvation response?. Cellular signaling, 28 (8), 917-923.
Sniffen, C.J., O’connor, J.D., Van Soest, P.J., Fox, D.G. and Russell, J.B., 1992. A net carbohydrate and protein system for evaluating cattle diets: II. Carbohydrate and protein availability. Journal of Animal Science, 70, 3562-3577.
Škottová, N. and Krečman, V., 1998. Silymarin as a potential hypocholesterolaemic drug. Physiol Res, 47 (1), 1-7.
Škottová, N., Krečman, V. and Šimánek, V., 1999. Activities of silymarin and its flavonolignans upon low density lipoprotein oxidizability in vitro. Phytotherapy Research: An International Journal Devoted to Pharmacological and Toxicological Evaluation of Natural Product Derivatives, 13, 535-537.
Stojević, Z., Piršljin, J., Milinković-Tur, S., Zdelar-Tuk, M. and Ljubić, B.B., 2005. Activities of AST, ALT and GGT in clinically healthy dairy cows during lactation and in the dry period. Veterinarski Arhiv, 75 (1), 67-73.
Tajmohammadi, A., Razavi, B. M. and Hosseinzadeh, H., 2018. Silybum marianum (milk thistle) and its main constituent, silymarin, as a potential therapeutic plant in metabolic syndrome: A review. Phytotherapy research, 32 (10), 1933-1949.
Ulger, I., Onmaz, A. C. and Ayaşan, T., 2017. Effects of silymarin (Silybum marianum) supplementation on milk and blood parameters of dairy cattle. South African Journal of Animal Science, 47 (6), 758-765.
Urrutia, N.L. and Harvatine, K.J., 2017. Acetate dose-dependently stimulates milk fat synthesis in lactating dairy cows. The Journal of Nutrition, 147 (5), 763-769.
Van Soest, P.V., Robertson, J.B. and Lewis, B.A., 1991. Methods for dietary fiber, neutral detergent fiber, and nonstarch polysaccharides in relation to animal nutrition. Journal of Dairy Science, 74, 3583-3597.
Wankhade, P.R., Manimaran, A., Kumaresan, A., Jeyakumar, S., Ramesha, K.P., Sejian, V., Rajendran, D. and Varghese, M.R., 2017. Metabolic and immunological changes in transition dairy cows: a review. Veterinary World, 10 (11), 1367–1377.
Zarrin, M., De Matteis, L., Vernay, M.C.M.B., Wellnitz, O., van Dorland, H.A. and Bruckmaier, R.M., 2013. Long-term elevation of β-hydroxybutyrate in dairy cows through infusion: Effects on feed intake, milk production, and metabolism. Journal of Dairy Science, 96 (5), 2960-2972.
Zarrin, M., Grossen-Rösti, L., Bruckmaier, R.M. and Gross, J.J., 2017. Elevation of blood β-hydroxybutyrate concentration affects glucose metabolism in dairy cows before and after parturition. Journal of Dairy Science, 100, 2323-2333.
We are grateful to Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq; project 140767/2017-7) and Agência Paulista de Tecnologia dos Agronegócios (APTA) for supporting this study.
Ethics approval and consent to participate
This research project was approved by the Animal Ethics Committee (AEC) of the Federal University of Paraíba (UFPB, Brazil), reference number 4117200519. All the authors consent to participate in publication.
Consent for publication
All the authors consent to publish the manuscript.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare no conflicts of interest.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
About this article
Cite this article
Pinheiro, J.K., Gonzaga Neto, S., Signoretti, R.D. et al. Metabolic status of lactating cows given a hepatoprotectant and different feed energy sources. Trop Anim Health Prod 53, 184 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11250-021-02631-4
- Blood parameters
- Dairy cows
- Lipid profile