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  • Author or Editor: Jörg E. Aurich x
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To investigate effects of preterm induction of calving by administration of flumethasone and dinoprost on the lecithin-to-sphingomyelin ratio in amniotic fluid and on neonatal respiratory distress after birth.


45 dairy cows and their newborn calves.


Amniotic fluid from 45 cows was obtained and tested between days 258 and 270 of gestation. Cows were then given flumethasone (10 mg; n = 15), dinoprost (25 mg; n = 15), or saline solution (n = 15). Thirty hours later, left flank cesarean section was performed, amniotic fluid was collected, and the calf was delivered. Blood for determination of progesterone was withdrawn at amniotic fluid sample collections and before induction of calving. Blood for analysis of pH and base deficit was collected from calves during cesarean section and repeatedly after birth. Phospholipids in amniotic fluid were measured by thin-layer chromatography, and progesterone was determined by radioimmunoassay. Base deficit and pH were measured, using a blood gas analyzer.


Before treatments, a corpus luteum was present in all cows and the lecithin-to-sphingomyelin ratio in amniotic fluid did not differ between groups. Thirty hours after injections of flumethasone and dinoprost, progesterone concentration had decreased (P < 0.05) and the lecithin-to-sphingomyelin ratio was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than values in controls. In calves delivered after flumethasone or dinoprost treatments, the degree of acidosis was significantly (P < 0.05) less than that in controls.


Flumethasone and dinoprost, given to pregnant cows, accelerate fetal lung maturation and improve respiratory function after birth. (Am J Vet Res 1997;58:404–407)

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To evaluate changes of glycoconjugate in uterine glands of endometrial tissues obtained from mares.

Animals—50 adult mares.

Procedure—Uterine biopsy samples were collected during the breeding season and analyzed histologically for signs of chronic endometrial degeneration. Stage of the estrous cycle was established, using clinical examination and determination of hormonal status. Uterine tissue samples were analyzed, using lectin histochemical and immunohistochemical techniques (estrogen and progesterone receptors). Connective tissues were stained to determine alterations of ground substance in periglandular fibrosis.

Results—Of 50 mares, 30 (60%) were classified as normal or having modest alterations, and 20 (40%) were classified as having moderate or severe endometrial degeneration. In normal equine endometrium, several lectins (Helix pomatia agglutinin, Lotus tetragonolobus agglutinin, Ricinus communis I agglutinin, Ulex europaeus agglutinin, and wheat germ agglutinin) bound to glycoconjugates of the luminal epithelium and openings of uterine glands. Lectin binding patterns of cystic dilated glands or fibrotic glands in endometrial samples were remarkably strong, whereas normal surrounding cells remained unstained. Lotus tetragonolobus lectin was not suitable for detecting endometrial alterations. Connective tissues stained with Alcian blue and results of Hale colloidal-iron binding revealed acidic ground substance in periglandular fibrosis. Estrogen and progesterone receptors were evenly distributed in healthy and affected endometrial samples.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Glycoconjugate patterns of uterine glands were altered in mares with chronic endometrial degeneration. Therefore, uterine secretions are likely to be altered. These changes are not induced by changes in content of estrogen and progesterone receptors in endometrial tissues. (Am J Vet Res 2001;62:840–845)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Labor and delivery stimulate increased release of catecholamines and endogenous opioid peptides in neonates. Catecholamines promote adaptation to the extrauterine environment after birth. Enkephalins are stored together with catecholamines in the adrenal medulla and have an inhibitory effect on catecholamine release. We investigated the influence of labor and neonatal hypoxia on epinephrine, norepinephrine, and met-enkephalin release in calves. Blood samples were taken from the umbilical artery before rupture of the umbilical cord and from the jugular vein repeatedly after birth. Highest plasma norepinephrine concentration was found in calves delivered at the end of gestation (term calves) before umbilical cord rupture. In calves delivered before the physiologic end of gestation (preterm calves), norepinephrine values increased after cord rupture, but remained lower than values in term calves. Epinephrine release followed a similar pattern, but norepinephrine was clearly predominant. In term calves, met-enkephalin values were significantly higher than values in preterm calves. In calves of both groups, met-enkephalin release increased after cord rupture. During birth, the increase in catecholamine release seems to take place earlier than that of enkephalins. Norepinephrine-dominated stimulation during expulsion of the calf might be followed by increasing enkephalinergic inhibition after cord rupture and onset of respiration. Reduced release of catecholamines and enkephalins in preterm calves may be connected with delayed adaptation to the extrauterine environment.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research