Metabolic variables and plasma leptin concentrations in dairy cows exhibiting reproductive cycle abnormalities identified through milk progesterone monitoring during the post partum period.
ABSTRACT We have used milk progesterone analysis to monitor reproductive function in lactating dairy cows and have then related this reproductive function to a variety of metabolic variables. Monitoring of cows (n = 41) during the period of onset of luteal function (first milk progesterone reading>5 ng/ml) revealed that delayed onset was associated with increased milk yield and greater loss of body weight and body condition but was not related to plasma metabolite or leptin concentrations. Further monitoring of reproductive function in these 41 cows and an additional 33 cows (total n = 74) during the mating period (from weeks 6 to 14 post partum) identified reproductive cycle abnormalities in 29 (39.2% of animals). The occurrence of cycle abnormalities was associated with increased milk yield (P < 0.05), elevated plasma beta hydroxybutyrate (P < 0.05) and reduced plasma leptin (P < 0.01) concentrations as well as a lower (P < 0.05) rate of gain of body weight and condition score but was not associated with plasma urea or glucose concentrations. Furthermore, cows exhibiting cycle abnormalities had a longer (P < 0.01) interval to first service and a smaller percentage had conceived by 100 days post partum (34.5% versus 66.7%; P < 0.01). These results provide further evidence that impaired reproductive function during the post partum period in dairy cows is caused by a poor energy status and not elevated urea concentrations. Reduced plasma leptin concentrations in animals suffering reproductive dysfunction further supports this view.
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ABSTRACT: Since its discovery in 1994, leptin, a protein hormone synthesized and secreted by adipose tissue, has been shown to regulate feed intake in several species including sheep and pigs. Although a nimiety of information exists regarding the physiological role of leptin in rodents and humans, the regulation and action of leptin in domestic animals is less certain. Emerging evidence in several species indicates that leptin may also affect the hypothalamo-pituitary-gonadal axis. Leptin receptor mRNA is present in the anterior pituitary and hypothalamus of several species, including sheep. In rats, effects of leptin on GnRH, LH and FSH secretion have been inconsistent, with leptin exhibiting both stimulatory and inhibitory action in vivo and in vitro. Evidence to support direct action of leptin at the level of the gonad indicates that the leptin receptor and its mRNA are present in ovarian tissue of several species, including cattle. These leptin receptors are functional, since leptin inhibits insulin-induced steroidogenesis of both granulosa and thecal cells of cattle in vitro. Leptin receptor mRNA is also found in the testes of rodents. As with the ovary, these receptors are functional, at least in rats, since leptin inhibits hCG-induced testosterone secretion by Leydig cells in vitro. During pregnancy, placental production of leptin may be a major contributor to the increase in maternal leptin in primates but not rodents. However, in both primates and rodents, leptin receptors exist in placental tissues and may regulate metabolism of the fetal-placental unit. As specific leptin immunoassays are developed for domestic animals, in vivo associations may then be made among leptin, body energy stores, dietary energy intake and reproductive function. This may lead to a more definitive role of leptin in domestic animal reproduction.Domestic Animal Endocrinology 12/2001; 21(4):251-70. · 2.38 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: This paper reviews data on leptin gene expression in adipose tissue (AT) and mammary gland of adult ruminants, as well as on plasma leptin variations, according to genetic, physiological, nutritional and environmental factors. AT leptin mRNA level was higher in sheep and goat subcutaneous than visceral tissues, and the opposite was observed in cattle; it was higher in fat than in lean selection line in sheep; it was decreased by undernutrition and increased by refeeding in cattle and sheep, and not changed by adding soybeans to the diet of lactating goats; it was increased by injection of NPY to sheep, and by GH treatment of growing sheep and cattle. Insulin and glucocorticoids in vitro increased AT leptin mRNA in cattle, and leptin production in sheep. Long daylength increased AT lipogenic activities and leptin mRNA, as well as plasma leptin in sheep. Mammary tissue leptin mRNA level was high during early pregnancy and was lower but still expressed during late pregnancy and lactation in sheep. Leptin was present in sheep mammary adipocytes, epithelial and myoepithelial cells during early pregnancy, late pregnancy and lactation, respectively. Plasma leptin in cattle and sheep was first studied thanks to a commercial "multi-species" kit. It was positively related to body fatness and energy balance or feeding level, and decreased by beta-agonist injection. The recent development of specific RIA for ruminant leptin enabled more quantitative study of changes in plasma leptin concentration, which were explained for 35--50% by body fatness and for 15--20% by feeding level. The response of plasma leptin to meal intake was related positively to glycemia, and negatively to plasma 3-hydroxybutyrate. The putative physiological roles of changes in leptin gene expression are discussed in relation with published data on leptin receptors in several body tissues, and on in vivo or in vitro effects of leptin treatment.Domestic Animal Endocrinology 12/2001; 21(4):271-95. · 2.38 Impact Factor
- Reproduction in Domestic Animals - REPROD DOMEST ANIM. 01/1998; 33:193-204.