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Title:Influence of prepartum nutrition on cow performance and subsequent calf performance, glucose tolerance, carcass characteristics, efficiency, and gene expression
Author(s):Wilson, Thomas Bain
Director of Research:Shike, Daniel W.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Shike, Daniel W.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Felix, Tara L.; Faulkner, Dan B.; Parrett, Douglas F.; Loor, Juan J.
Department / Program:Animal Sciences
Discipline:Animal Sciences
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):beef cattle
fetal programming
Abstract:Previous research has demonstrated the potential for cow nutrition during mid- and late gestation to have lasting effects on progeny growth, carcass characteristics, and insulin sensitivity. With the advancement of nutrigenomics, the ability to evaluate the effects of maternal nutrition on gene expression in tissues of subsequent progeny has grown. The objective of this dissertation was to evaluate potential fetal programming effects of beef cow nutrition within beef production systems. Fall-calving cows grazing endophyte-fescue experience a decline in forage quality during late gestation, when fetal growth occurs at a high rate. Fall-calving, mature cows and their progeny were used to evaluate the effects of late gestation dried distillers grains plus solubles (DDGS) supplementation on cow performance, and progeny growth and carcass characteristics. Cows were offered daily DDGS supplementation or offered no supplement 69 ± 9 d prepartum through calving. Cow BW and BCS change during late gestation were greater (P ≤ 0.02) for cows offered supplement. Supplementation had no effect (P ≥ 0.11) on calving date, calf birth or weaning BW, or pre-weaning ADG, milk production, AI conception, or overall pregnancy rate. For steer progeny, dam DDGS supplementation had no effect (P ≥ 0.19) on feedlot performance or carcass characteristics. Use of corn coproducts in drylot beef gestation rations has increased over the last decade. Because of the elevated energy and CP content of corn coproducts, cow drylot rations may easily exceed cow energy and CP requirements. The effects of excessive prepartum dietary energy and CP intake of subsequent progeny needs to be further investigated. In one experiment, spring-calving, mature cows and their progeny were used to evaluate the effects of prepartum dietary energy on cow performance as well as performance and carcass characteristics of subsequent progeny. Cows were limit-fed isonitrogenous rations that provided 100% or 125% of TDN requirements, respectively, from 83 ± 10 d prepartum to calving. Cow BW change through breeding was greater (P < 0.01) and BCS change tended to be greater (P = 0.09) for cows 125% of TDN requirement. Birth BW was greater (P = 0.02) for calves born to cows fed excessive dietary energy with no increase (P = 0.30) in percentage of unassisted births. There were no effects (P ≥ 0.27) of dietary energy on calving date, milk production, or subsequent pregnancy rate. Calf feedlot performance was not affected (P ≥ 0.20) by prepartum energy. Although progeny born to dams fed excessive dietary energy tended (P = 0.10) to have greater marbling scores at weaning, prepartum dietary energy had no effect (P ≥ 0.60) on carcass marbling score or other carcass characteristics. Two experiments were conducted to investigate the effects of prepartum dietary CP intake on cow performance as well as subsequent progeny growth, carcass characteristics, and plasma glucose and insulin concentrations. Spring-calving, mature cows in both experiments were limit-fed rations formulated to be isocaloric, and provide 100% or 129% of CP requirement, respectively, from 92 ± 10 or 78 ± 12 d prepartum to calving in Exp. 1 and 2, respectively. Prepartum CP intake had no effect on cow BW, BCS, milk production, and subsequent reproduction or progeny pre-weaning growth in either experiment. In Exp. 1, post-weaning ADG, final BW, and HCW were decreased in progeny born to dams fed excessive dietary CP. In Exp. 2, progeny post-weaning growth was not affected by treatment; yet, 12th rib fat thickness, KPH, and yield grade were greater for progeny born to dams fed excessive dietary CP. Progeny born to dams fed excessive dietary CP had decreased glucose and insulin concentrations, and insulin to glucose ratios, indicating greater insulin sensitivity. Mid-gestation is a critical time for the development of skeletal muscle and adipogenesis, two tissues of great interest to the beef industry. Much of the work that has demonstrated promising fetal programming effects, was done in nutrient restricted or overfed dams, 50% or 150% or energy and protein requirements, respectively. One experiment was conducted to investigate the effects of divergent plane of nutrition during mid-gestation on cow performance and progeny growth, feed efficiency, methane production, glucose tolerance, carcass characteristics, and gene expression in LM. Mature cows were limit-fed 3 planes of nutrition from 196 ± 14 to 114 ± 14 d prepartum: 100% energy and protein requirement (REQ), 70% requirement (70%REQ), or 130% requirement (130%REQ). Cow ADG during mid-gestation was greatest (P < 0.01) for 130%REQ, least for 70%REQ, with REQ intermediate. Transition period (30 d post-weaning) ADG was greatest (P < 0.01) for 70%REQ progeny, least for REQ progeny, with 130%REQ progeny intermediate. Treatment had no effect (P ≥ 0.21) on progeny RFI or 24 h methane emissions; but, REQ progeny tended (P = 0.06) to have decreased RG relative to 70%REQ and 130%REQ progeny. Treatment had no effect (P ≥ 0.12) on progeny glucose and insulin concentrations, AUC, glucose clearance rate, or insulin to glucose ratio during glucose tolerance test. Progeny of REQ dams had greater (P = 0.04) HCW than 70%REQ progeny, with 130%REQ intermediate and not different from either. Treatment had no effect (P ≥ 0.27) on other carcass characteristics. Treatment had no effect (P ≥ 0.24) on expression of 13 selected genes in LM, with the exception of MYH1 (P = 0.07). Expression of all target genes, except MYH7, changed (P ≤ 0.03) as progeny d of age increased. There was a treatment by d of age interaction (P = 0.04) for expression of MYH1, in which expression of MYH1 was least in progeny born to 70%REQ dams at 392 ± 14 d of age relative to REQ and 130% progeny. There were treatment by progeny sex by d of age interactions (P ≤ 0.01) for expression of SLC2A4, YY1, and MYH7. In conclusion, prepartum DDGS supplementation improved cow BW and BCS but did not alter milk production, subsequent reproduction, or subsequent calf performance or carcass characteristics. Feeding cows 125% of TDN requirement during late gestation increased cow BW change and progeny birth body weight; but, had no effect on pregnancy rate or progeny performance. Although feeding cows 129% of CP requirement during late gestation did not affect cow performance, progeny post-weaning growth was decreased and carcass adiposity was increased. Differing mid-gestation plane of nutrition diverged cow BW and affected transition period ADG and HCW of progeny; yet, did not dramatically impact methane production, insulin resistance, or gene expression in LM.
Issue Date:2015-07-14
Type:Thesis
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/88031
Rights Information:Copyright 2015 Thomas Wilson
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-09-29
Date Deposited:August 201


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