Energy metabolism indicators and body condition in peripartal period of Alpine goats

  • Ivana Milosevic-Stankovic University of Belgrade, Faculty of Agriculture
  • Slavca Hristov
  • Nevena Maksimovic
  • Blazenka Popovic
  • Vesna Davidovic
  • Cvijan Mekic
  • Blagoje Dimitrijevic
  • Marko Cincovic
  • Branislav Stankovic
Keywords: Body condition, energy metabolism, goat, parity, peripartal period


The investigation was performed on two groups of primiparous and multiparous healthy Alpine dairy goats (25 each) during lactation. Blood samples were collected (jugular venipuncture) 10-15 days before and 10-15 and 30 days after the parturition into BD SST-II Advance (3.5 mL) and BD NaF 3.0 mg Na2EDTA 6.0 mg (2 mL) vacutainers, cooled and centrifuged (1500 r/min, 15 minutes). Glucose, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) and β-hydroxybutyrate (BHBA) concentrations in blood sera were determined using A15 automatic spectrophotometric analyzer (Biosystem, Spain). Simultaneously, body condition scoring (BCS) was performed by Villaquiran et al. (2007) method. The obtained data were analyzed by IBM SPSS statistics 21.

The glucose concentration inclined to increase in both groups. Differences between glucose levels were significant (p<0.05) 15 days before and 15 days after, as well as 15 and 30 days after the parturition, and very significant (p<0.01) 15 days before and 30 days after the parturition. The BHBA blood levels significantly differed 15 days before and 30 days after and 15 and 30 days after the parturition (p<0.05). BHBA concentration peaked at week 2 postpartum, following the increase of NEFA, providing the substrate for BHBA synthesis. NEFA levels significantly (p<0.05) differed 15 days before and 15 days after the parturition. Goats’ BCS ranged from 2 to 4 and significantly (p<0.05) depended on glucose (r=0.392) and BHBA (r=0.317) level 15 days before parturition. BCS 30 days postpartum very significantly depended on the glucose level (r=0.450), significantly higher than the concentration of BHBA (r=0.351) and NEFA concentration (r=-0.304). BCS 15 days before parturition did not depend on the NEFA concentration. Fifteen days after the parturition BCS did not statistically depend on the observed indicators.

Obtained data suggest that knowledge of BCS and energy indicators levels may be very useful in research and practice in order to appreciate energy metabolism of pregnant and lactating dairy ruminants, particularly dairy goats. These data are poorly documented for goats, but they can reveal early pathological metabolic changes in transiting female goat organism, enabling successful therapeutic intervention.

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