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Short Communication - PHYSIOLOGICAL SERUM CHEMISTRY VARIABLES AND BRIX% FOR ASSESSING STATUS OF PASSIVE TRANSFER IN GOAT KIDS.

Byline: M. H. Lashari, U. Farooq, M. Idris, Z. U. Rehman, A. Aslam, I. Shafiq, S. Bibi, M. J. Majeed and A. Rasheed

Key words: Passive transfer, Serum chemistry, Teddy Goat, Pakistan

INTRODUCTION

The transfer of immunoglobulins from mother to kids, particularly IgGs, is termed as passive transfer which is vital in the protection of neonates from infectious diseases(Weaver et al., 2000a). The route of transfer is colostrum, the rst mammary secretion produced after birth in the mammalian species to provide immunity. The improper transfer of passive immunity i.e. failure in passive transfer(FPT) at birth leads to the higher risk of morbidity and mortality from contagious diseases in young livestock(Hogan et al., 2016). The cut point for a successful passive transfer has been established at serum IgG [greater than or equal to]10g/L(Britti et al., 2005; Davis and Giguere, 2005; Zanker et al., 2001).

Various methods have been developed to assess FPT in domestic animals. The radial immune-diffusion test(RID) and the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay(ELISA) are considered as the only tests that directly measure serum IgG concentration, hence these are nominated as gold tests for assessing FPT(Hernandez et al., 2016; Wallace et al., 2006). Apart from these, certain other indirect tests, both laboratory and in-field, are also being validated for their reliability such as refractometry(Hernandez et al., 2016), sodium sulfite precipitation test(Lee et al., 2008), zinc sulfate turbidity test(ZSTT)(Hogan et al., 2016), whole-blood glutaraldehyde coagulation test(GCT)(Sedlinska et al., 2005), and various serum biochemical variables(Britti et al., 2005; Davis and Giguere, 2005; Zanker et al., 2001). It has also been well established that Brix% deduced through Brix refractometer can be used alternatively to serum total protein refractometer(Deelen et al., 2014; Hernandez et al., 2016).

The cut point of Brix% at which successful passive transfer of serum IgG([greater than or equal to]10g/L) takes place has been ascertained as ranging from 7.8 to 8.3%(Deelen et al., 2014; Hernandez et al., 2016). Extensive work has been reported globally for the assessment of FPT in foals(Davis and Giguere, 2005), lambs(Britti et al., 2005), dairy calves(Weaver et al., 2000a; Calloway et al., 2002), goat kids(Castro et al., 2009) and in certain captive wild animals(Weaver et al., 2000b). However, to the best of our knowledge, there is dearth of such work reported from Pakistan. The only work reported so far(Ahmad et al., 2000) utilized ZSTT to assess level of circulating Igs in neonatal Pak Karakul sheep.

Goat population has risen from 70.3 to 74.1 million head as per the Economic Survey of Pakistan(ESP, 2018). Teddy is a small-sized goat popular in Pakistan mainly because of its early puberty and higher fecundity as compared to other local breeds. It is a comparatively small and compact animal, adult males being 64 cm and adult females 53 cm high at withers, weighing 34 kg and 23 kg, respectively. As per the Livestock Census of Pakistan(GOP, 2006), teddy is the most abundant breed(13.4 millions) followed by Kamori(5.3 millions) and Beetal(4.2 millions).

The present work is a preliminary study designed with an objective to assess certain physiological serum chemistry variables viz. Sodium(Na+), Potassium(K+), Albumin(ALB), Aspartate aminotransferase(AST), Alanine aminotransferase(ALT) and Gamma glutamyl-transferase(GGT), and Brix%(by Brix refractometer) for assessing the status of passive transfer in goat kids of teddy and cross-bred breed from Dera Ghazi Khan district, Pakistan.

MATERIALS AND METHODS

Geo-location of Study Area: The sampling was carried out at Dera Ghazi Khan(D.G. Khan) district, Punjab province, Pakistan. It is sprawled at an area of 13,740km2. It has a prime geo-location owing to its placement at the junction of three other provinces of Pakistan. It lays at 15 km from the right bank of the Indus River and 96 km to the west of Multan. Geographically, it is located at 30'03" North and 70'38" East. The climate of the city is exceedingly dry in hills and plain areas. The summer season starts in April and continues till October. The winter season start from November to March(Malana et al., 2011).

Study Animals: Two flocks of teddy and cross-bred goats were identified and incorporated in the study, apropos to the relevant consent of the farmers. The flocks have a seasonal grazing pattern in D.G. Khan. The goat kids(n = 26) were divided as per breed(teddy and cross-bred), gender(male and female), age(1-4 days old, 5 days old, and above 5 days old) and parity(1st, 2nd, 3rd and >3). The study was approved in full by the "Ethical Review Committee for the Use of Animals" which comes under the administrative control of the 'Office of the Research, Innovation and Commercialization' of the Islamia University of Bahawalpur, Pakistan.

Sample Collection: Blood samples were collected during the kidding season of 2018 i.e. January to April 2018. About 5-7 mL blood was aseptically collected from the jugular vein into vaccutainers containing thixotropic gel separator for serum separation. The collection procedure was standardized by using the same personnel and same technique of restraint. Samples were transported to the laboratory at the department of Zoology, the Islamia University of Bahawlapur, Pakistan. Serum was harvested and stored for further analysis.

Refractometry: Refractometry was carried out through Brix Digital Refractometer(SR-95 Digital, Medline Scientific, UK; 0-90% with USB Ref: 8950.1000, Serial No. 088457). A 50uL drop of serum was mounted on refractometer bulb and Brix% value was noted.

Serum Chemistry Analysis: Various serum chemistry variables were analyzed using commercial kits as given below following the manufacturer's instructions: Na+ and K+: BioMed Diagnostics, MDSS Gmbh, Germany ALB, AST, ALT and GGT: Human Gesellschaft fuer Biochemica und Diagnostica mbH, Silberbach-597, Germany

Statistical Analysis: Statistical analysis was conducted through Statistical Package for Social Science(SPSS for Windows version 12, SPSS Inc., Chicago, IL, USA). The mean(+- SE) values for all serum chemistry variables and Brix% were calculated. Variation within breed and gender was deduced through independent sample T-test. One-way ANOVA was used to deduce variation between parity and age groups with Duncan's Multiple Range Test as post-hoc. Significance was attributed at P a$? 0.05. Pearson's correlation coefficients were also calculated between Brix% and all the serum chemistry variables of the study. Values of Brix% were used for deducing IgG levels through following equation(Morrill et al., 2013): 9.12846 x Brix% - 59.2122 = Estimated IgG in g/L

RESULTS

The overall mean(+-SE) values for Na+, K+, ALB, AST, ALT, GGT and Brix% were 82.5+-2.2meq/L, 5.0+-0.5meq/L, 2.8+-0.2U/L, 1444.4+-32.1U/L, 735.1+-32.3U/L, 223.0+-3.7U/L and 11.2+-0.9%, respectively(Table 1). Results regarding breed revealed that Na+ and K+ were different within teddy and cross-bred kids being higher(Pa$?0.05) for the latter. All the biochemical variables under study and Brix% were found to be non-significant(P[greater than or equal to]0.05) for gender, age and parity.

The estimated IgG values calculated from Brix% are given in Table 2. Results revealed that overall Brix% of 11.2 coincided with IgG level of 43.25g/L. Mean Brix% values for cross-bred and teddy were 10.9+-0.2 and 11.6+-0.3%, respectively coinciding with IgG values of 40.2 and 46.6g/L, respectively. The IgG level decreased as the kids got older, though non-significantly(P [greater than or equal to]0.05).

The results on correlation coefficients between serum chemistry variables and estimated serum IgG levels are given in Table 3. It was revealed that K+ was negatively and ALT was positively correlated to estimated IgG at Pa$?0.05.

Table 1. Overall mean(+-SE) values for serum chemistry variables and Brix% in cross-bred and teddy goat kids

###Parameters###Na+###K+###ALB###AST###ALT###GGT###Brix

###(meq/L)###(meq/L)###(U/L)###(U/L)###(U/L)###(U/L)###(%)

###Cross-bred

###89.6+-5.2###5.4+-0.2###2.7+-0.05###1428.7+-37.3###718.6+-24.5###222.0+-2.6###10.9+-0.2

###(n = 15)

Breed

###Teddy

###73.0+-4.8###4.4+-0.4###2.9+-0.09###1465.7+-40.9###758+-32.6###224.5+-4.7###11.6+-0.3

###(n = 11)

###Male

###85.6+-5.3###4.5+-0.3###2.8+-0.06###1418.2+-49.5###718.3+-27.5###218.9+-3.03###11.3+-0.3

###(n = 12)

Gender

###Female

###79.9+-5.7###5.4+-0.2###2.8+-0.08###1466.8+-28.4###749.5+-26.3###226.6+-3.1###11.2+-0.2

###(n = 14)

###1-4 days

###85.2+-7.4###5.4+-0.3###2.8+-0.05###1446.9+-54.4###680.1+-71.3###226.8+-4.5###11.7+-0.3

###(n = 10)

###5 days

Age###72.6+-3.2###4.3+-0.4###2.8+-0.1###1499.8+-47.6###736.0+-46.4###220.07+-3.9###11.3+-0.3

###(n = 8)

###>5 Days

###89.2+-7.7###5.1+-0.4###2.8+-0.1###1385.7+-26.9###719.1+-32.0###221.3+-2.9###10.5+-0.2

###(n = 8)

###1st

###75.9+- 6.7###4.6+-0.4###2.8+-0.1###1463.3+-51.1###710.2+-37.7###224.9+-5.6###11.0+-0.3

###(n = 8)

###2nd

###81.8+-7.5###5.3+-0.3###2.8+-0.03###1468.7+-39.9###742.0+-33.4###219.9+-3.5###11.1+-0.3

###(n = 7)

Parity

###3rd

###86.1+-7.7###5.2+-0.3###2.8+-0.09###1399.6+-79.8###739.2+-40.3###225.8+-4.4###11.8+-0.5

###(n = 6)

###>3

###90.07+-11.4###4.8+-0.8###2.8+-0.1###1433.6+-55.6###760.4+-49.03###221.2+-4.2###11.0+-0.4

###(n = 5)

###Overall###82.5+-2.2###5.0+-0.5###2.8+-0.2###1444.4+-32.1###735.1+-32.3###223.0+-3.7###11.2+-0.9

Table 2. Estimated IgG values in cross-bred and teddy goat kids using equation by Morrill et al.(2013)

###Parameters###Brix###Estimated IgG

###(%)###(g/L)

###Cross-bred(n = 15)###10.9###40.2

Breed

###Teddy(n = 11)###11.6###46.6

###Male(n = 12)###11.3###43.9

Gender

###Female(n = 14)###11.2###43.0

###1-4 days(n = 10)###11.7###47.5

Age###5 days(n = 8)###11.3###43.9

###>5 Days(n = 8)###10.5###36.6

###1st(n = 8)###11.0###41.9

###2nd(n = 7)###11.1###42.1

Parity

###3rd(n = 6)###11.8###48.5

###>3(n = 5)###11.0###41.2

###Overall###11.2###43.25

Table 3. Pearson's correlation coefficient of serum chemistry variables with estimated serum IgG levels

###Parameters###r-value

Sodium###-0.092

Potassium###-0.447*

Albumin###0.08

Aspartate aminotransferase###-0.275

Alanine aminotransferase###0.409*

Gamma glutamyl-transferase###-0.089

DISCUSSION

The present study is the first of its kind being reported for teddy and cross-bred goat kids of Pakistan regarding the assessment of physiological values of certain serum biochemical attributes and Brix% as predictors of passive transfer status. Though the number of study animals is quite low to reach an evident conclusion, yet it attempts to present a preliminary result. This study included Na+, K+, ALB, AST, ALT and GGT as the serum attributes to be studied.

Though RID is a gold test for measuring Igs in colostrum or serum, however, it is time consuming, expensive and laborious which makes it inevitable that certain other inexpensive, quick and field-side tests may be developed for assessment of FPT. Amongst turbidity-based tests, refractometry(Calloway et al., 2002), ZSTT(Hogan et al., 2016) and GCT(Sedlinska et al., 2005) have proved substantially valid for the purpose. Lately, however, various serum chemistry variables are also being tested as valid predictors of FPT in domestic animals. Furthermore, it has also been established that Brix% deduced through Brix refractometer can be used alternatively to serum total protein refractometer(Deelen et al., 2014; Hernandez et al., 2016).

The results of present study revealed to be non-significant for most of the variables under study. Only Na+ and K+ were different(Pa$?0.05) for the two breeds under study. Similar results have already been reported(Rocha et al., 2012) while working on cattle calves. They reported a gradual elevation in both cations after colostrum ingestion. Various workers have reported serum chemistry analytes in serum of domestic animals for predicting FPT through comparison with levels of Igs(Britti et al., 2005; Davis and Giguere, 2005) and it has been concluded that Na+ and K+ are not good indicators of assessment of FPT as compared to other chemistry variables.

Our results revealed that overall Brix% of 11.2 coincided with IgG level of 43.25g/L. The cut point of Brix% at which successful passive transfer of serum IgG([greater than or equal to]10g/L) takes place has been ascertained as ranging from 7.8 to 8.3% by Deelen et al.(2014) and Hernandez et al.(2016). Our value of 11.2% is higher and hence reveals a successful passive transfer in both breeds. Lower value of IgG for Holstein calves has been reported as 21.3g/L coinciding with Brix% of 9.2(Hernandez et al., 2016). Similarly, Deelen et al.(2014) also reported lower value of IgG with a Brix% of 9.2. Variation could be attributed to difference in species. In another study on goat kids, O'brien et al.(1993) also reported lower value for IgG being 11.7g/L through ZSTT. Berge et al.(2018) in a latest study on lambs also reported a lower IgG value of 8.5%. Higher values in our study could be an indigenous inherent characteristic of teddy and cross-bred goats of Pakistan.

Overall mean Brix% values for cross-bred and teddy were 10.9+-0.2 and 11.6+-0.3%, coinciding with 40.2 and 46.6g/L of IgG, respectively. Higher values for teddy breed could be an inherent characteristic which needs further studies with a larger population and sensitive tests such as RID. The IgG level decreased(P[greater than or equal to]0.05) as the kids got older, though non-significantly. This is in line with various other reports which plausibly attribute it to the closure of intestinal epithelium and gradual strength in intestinal barriers(Calloway et al., 2002; Weaver et al., 2000a).

Results regarding correlation coefficient between serum chemistry variables and estimated IgG levels revealed that K+ was negatively and ALT was positively correlated at a significant level. Prior studies have ascertained that if colostrum is fed to neonatal ruminants at an appropriate time(within first 24-48 hrs), the enzymes of colostrum pass through the intestinal barriers of neonates just like IgGs. These can be ultimately utilized as biomarkers for FPT(Britti et al., 2005; Davis and Giguere, 2005). The GGT activity is directly proportional to serum IgG level(Britti et al., 2005) who reported a positive correlation(Pa$?0.01; r=0.60). The threshold points for GGT ranging from 50-300U/L have been reported for assessing FPT(Davis and Giguere, 2005). In our results, GGT, though, was within the threshold limits, yet it had a non-significant correlation with estimated IgG level.

This is not in line with any of the previously published results. Another vital serum chemistry variable being used as a marker for FPT is ALT which was positively correlated(r=0.409) to IgG level in our study. This is in accordance to previous reports on lambs and dairy calves(Britti et al., 2005; Davis and Giguere, 2005). Lack of association between other chemistry variables and IgG level does not rule out their potential as markers for FPT. In fact, they envisage a broader study with more sophisticated techniques and larger sample size.

In a nutshell, results of our study indicate that teddy and cross-bred goat kids have substantial circulating IgG level. The values of chemical attributes studied here are within the physiological limits of goats. Furthermore, ALT is strongly correlated to Brix% and can be used for establishing a passive transfer status. Brix% is an inexpensive, easy-to-use, field-side test which suits resource-poor settings such as that of Pakistan. Future studies need to be directed towards validation of other field-side tests such as ZSTT, GCT etc for economic and reliable purposes using larger population and sample size.

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Author:M. H. Lashari, U. Farooq, M. Idris, Z. U. Rehman, A. Aslam, I. Shafiq, S. Bibi, M. J. Majeed and A.
Publication:Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Oct 31, 2020
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