Ovarian, metabolic and endocrine indexes in dairy cows with different body condition scores
A. V. Sirotkin 1  
,   A. V. Makarevich 1, 2,   P. Makovicky 3,   E. Kubovicova 1, 2
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Animal Production Research Centre Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, 95141 Lužianky-near-Nitra, Slovak Republic
Research Institute for Cattle Breeding Ltd. Rapotin, Vyzkumniku 267, 788 13 Vikyrovice, Czech Republic
Czech University of Life Sciences in Prague, Department of Veterinary Sciences, 165 21 Prague 6 – Suchdol, Czech Republic
A. V. Sirotkin   

Animal Production Research Centre Nitra, Hlohovecka 2, 95141 Lužianky-near-Nitra, Slovak Republic
Publication date: 2013-10-11
J. Anim. Feed Sci. 2013;22(4):316–322
Body condition can influence bovine fertility, but the morphological, biochemical and endocrine mechanisms of this influence are not fully understood. The aim of the study was to examine the interrelationships between cow body condition, morphological and endocrine state of the ovary, and blood metabolic indexes. Czech Fleckvieh dairy cows at the follicular phase of the ovarian cycle and with a tendency towards emaciation (body condition score- CS2) and cows with an average body condition score (BCS3) were compared. Plasma concentrations of aspartate aminotransferase (AST), non-esterified fatty acids (NEFAs), Ca2+, inorganic phosphorus (Pi), Mg2+, Fe2+, Cu2+, Zn2+ (determined using photometrically), leptin and insulin (ELISA), ovarian area, number of visible ovarian follicles, diameter of primary and secondary ovarian follicles and corpora albicantia (macro- and micrometric analysis of ovarian histological sections), as well as the release of progesterone, testosterone, oestradiol and insulin-like growth factor I (IGF-I) by isolated ovarian granulosa cells (RIA) were analysed. No significant differences between BCS2 and BCS3 cows in blood metabolic and endocrine indexes (except for decreased Zn2+ in BCS3 cows) were found. The ovaries of BCS2 cows, however, showed a lower ovarian area, diameter of both primary and secondary follicles and corpora albicantia, but not the number of visible secondary follicles as compared with BCS3 cows. No differences between the release of progesterone, testosterone and IGF-I by ovarian granulosa cells isolated from BCS2 or BCS3 cows were found, but the granulosa cells of BCS2 animals released more oestradiol than those of BCS3 cows. These results indicate that a slight reduction in BCS (tendency towards emaciation) does not substantially affect ovarian secretory activity or metabolic blood indexes. On the other hand, a tendency towards emaciation is associated with reduced ovarian follicle growth (but not their number) and increased secretion of oestradiol. These observations suggest that a tendency towards emaciation can suppress bovine fertility via alterations in ovarian folliculogenesis and oestrogen release.
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