Objectives of this experiment were to evaluate the effects of recombinant bovine somatotropin (rbST) treatment of periparturient dairy cows on hepatic mRNA expression for genes related to the somatotropic axis, insulin, glucose, and lipid metabolism, inflammation, and oxidative stress. Holstein cows were enrolled in the experiment at 253 ± 3 d of gestation and assigned to 1 of 3 treatments: untreated control (n = 53), 87.5 mg of rbST (n = 56; rbST87.5), and 125 mg of rbST (n = 57; rbST125). Cows in the rbST87.5 and rbST125 treatments received weekly injections of rbST from −21 to 28 d relative to calving. A subsample of cows (control = 20, rbST87.5 = 20, rbST125 = 20) was randomly selected for collection of liver samples according to expected calving date, BCS, and previous lactation 305-d mature equivalent milk yield. Only cows that had liver sampled at −21 ± 3, −7 ± 3, and 7 ± 3 d relative to calving were used in the current experiment. Blood, sampled weekly from −28 to 21 d relative to calving, was used to determine the concentrations of growth hormone, insulin-like growth factor 1, insulin, cortisol, fatty acids, β-hydroxybutyrate, glucose, haptoglobin, and tumor necrosis factor-α. Liver samples were used to determine hepatic mRNA expression of 50 genes. Treatment with rbST increased growth hormone concentrations during the postpartum period (control = 9.0 ± 0.7, rbST87.5 = 15.3 ± 1.0, rbST125 = 18.5 ± 1.3 ng/mL) and increased insulin-like growth factor 1 concentrations during the prepartum period (control = 107.4 ± 7.2, rbST87.5 = 126.9 ± 6.6, rbST125 = 139.4 ± 6.9 ng/mL). Control cows had greater postpartum concentrations of β-hydroxybutyrate (control = 776.4 ± 64.0, rbST87.5 = 628.4 ± 59.7, rbST125 = 595.4 ± 60.9 µmol/L) than rbST cows. The rbST87.5 and rbST125 treatments upregulated the hepatic mRNA expression for somatotropic axis genes (GHR, GHR1A, IGF1, IGFBP3, and SOCS2) on d −7 relative to calving and upregulated the mRNA expression for SOCS2 on d 7. On d −7, rbST87.5 and rbST125 treatments increased mRNA expression for genes involved in hepatic lipid transport (ANGPTL4, APOA5, APOB100, and SCARB1) and downregulated mRNA expression for PPARD, which is involved in lipid storage. On d 7, rbST tended to upregulate the mRNA expression for genes involved in gluconeogenesis (PCK1) and fatty acid β-oxidation (ACOX1), and downregulated the mRNA expression for genes involved in inflammation (TNFRSF1A, ICAM1, CXCL1, MYD88, HIF1A, IL1RN, NFKBIA, and SOCS3) and oxidative stress (XBP1). Administration of rbST during the periparturient period may improve liver function and health by increasing hepatic capacity for gluconeogenesis and lipid transport and by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress.
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© 2017 American Dairy Science Association
- hepatic gene expression
- periparturient cows
- recombinant bovine somatotropin