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Variations in the concentrations of free amino acids in the plasma of the dairy cow at parturition

  • R. Verbeke (a1), E. Roets (a1) and G. Peeters (a1)


The plasma levels of individual amino acids were studied in 6 dairy cows from 4 days before to 3 days after calving. During this sampling period, the concentrations of 13 amino acids showed significant changes. The levels of several amino acids were depressed markedly in the sample collected immediately before calving. Following parturition, the concentration of most amino acids gradually returned to values obtained 3 days before calving. The glutamine and alanine contents of the plasma rose to a peak value 1 day after calving and subsequently decreased. The mean concentrations of glycine and α-aminobutyric acid did not change before parturition but rose significantly thereafter. These observations are discussed in terms of amino-acid utilization for milk protein synthesis and gluconeogenesis at the onset of lactation. The changes in plasma amino acid levels appear to be synchronized with those reported for prolactin and progesterone in the 24 h before parturition. This may indicate an important influence of both hormones on the lactogenic process in the cow. The highly significant correlations obtained between the concentrations of 14 individual amino acids are discussed.



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Variations in the concentrations of free amino acids in the plasma of the dairy cow at parturition

  • R. Verbeke (a1), E. Roets (a1) and G. Peeters (a1)


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