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  • Author or Editor: Mimoun Kessabi x
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SUMMARY

Muscle damage attributable to selenium (Se)/vitamin E deficiencies is known to develop at birth or later in lambs. The purpose of this study was to determine whether and when muscle damage develops in utero. Thirty pregnant ewes maintained on Se-deficient forages from birth were allotted to 3 equal groups. Half of each group was given a single im injection of 0.056 mg of Se/kg of body weight, 1 month before parturition. At 3 weeks before parturition, cesarean section-derived fetuses from Se-deficient ewes did not have evidence of muscle damage. At 2 weeks before parturition, fetuses from Se-deficient ewes had biochemical evidence of congenital nutritional myopathy, as evidenced by low blood Se concentration (P < 0.05) and by increased plasma creatine kinase (P < 0.001) and lactate dehydrogenase (P < 0.01) activities, compared with fetuses from Se-treated ewes. Thus, for optimal protection of fetuses and newborn lambs in Se-deficient areas, Se should be administered to ewes at least 1 month before parturition.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research