Objective—To determine the prevalence of detectable serum IgG concentrations in calves prior to ingestion of colostrum and to assess whether a detectable IgG concentration was related to dam parity, calf birth weight, calf sex, season of calving, or infectious agents that can be transmitted transplacentally.
Animals—170 Holstein dairy calves.
Procedures—Serum samples were obtained from calves prior to ingestion of colostrum, and serologic testing for bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) and Neospora caninum was performed. Relative risk, attributable risk, population attributable risk, and population attributable fraction for calves with a detectable serum IgG concentration attributable to positive results for N caninum and BVDV serologic testing were calculated. Logistic regression analysis was used to determine whether dam parity, calf sex, season of calving, and calf weight were associated with precolostral IgG concentration.
Results—90 (52.9%) calves had a detectable total serum IgG concentration (IgG ≥ 16 mg/dL). Relative risk, attributable risk, population attributable risk, and population attributable fraction for calves with a detectable serum IgG concentration attributable to positive results for N caninum serologic testing were 1.66, 0.34, 0.014, and 0.03, respectively. Calf sex, calf birth weight, and season of calving were not significant predictors for detection of serum IgG in precolostral samples.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Prevalence of IgG concentrations in precolostral serum samples was higher than reported elsewhere. There was no apparent link between serum antibodies against common infectious agents that can be transmitted transplacentally and detection of measurable serum IgG concentrations.
Objective—To determine whether vaccinating cows during late gestation against Mycoplasma bovis will result in adequate concentrations of M bovis–specific IgG1 in serum, colostrum, and milk.
Animals—78 dairy cows.
Procedures—Serum samples were obtained 60 and 39 days prior to expected parturition in vaccinated and control cows from a single herd. Serum and colostrum samples were also obtained at parturition. Milk samples were obtained 7 to 14 days after parturition. Samples were analyzed for anti–M bovis IgG1 concentrations.
Results—Prior to vaccination, control and vaccinated cows had similar anti–M bovis IgG1 concentrations. After initial vaccination and subsequent booster and at parturition, there was a significant difference between the 2 groups, with vaccinated cows having higher IgG concentrations. Colostrum from vaccinated cows had higher anti–M bovis IgG1 concentrations, compared with control cows; however, IgG1 concentrations in milk did not differ between the 2 groups.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Vaccination of late-gestation cows resulted in increased concentrations of anti–M bovis IgG1 in colostrum. However, ingestion of colostrum by calves may not guarantee protection against M bovis infection.
Objective—To determine the amount of colostral IgG required for adequate passive transfer in calves administered colostrum by use of oroesophageal intubation and evaluate the impact of other factors on passive transfer of colostral immunoglobulins in calves.
Animals—120 Holstein bull calves.
Procedures—Calves were randomly assigned to specific treatment groups on the basis of volume of colostrum administered and age of calf at administration of colostrum. Colostrum was administered once by oroesophageal intubation. Equal numbers of calves received 1, 2, 3, or 4 L of colostrum, and equal numbers of calves received colostrum at 2, 6, 10, 14, 18, or 22 hours after birth. Serum samples were obtained from calves 48 hours after birth for IgG determination by radial immunodiffusion assay. Effects of factors affecting transfer of colostral immunoglobulins were determined by use of a stepwise multiple regression model and logistic regression models.
Results—A minimum of 153 g of colostral IgG was required for optimum colostral transfer of immunoglobulins when calves were fed3Lof colostrum at 2 hours after birth. Substantially larger IgG intakes were required by calves fed colostrum > 2 hours after birth.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Feeding 100 g of colostral IgG by oroesophageal intubation was insufficient for adequate passive transfer of colostral immunoglobulins. At least 150 to 200 g of colostral IgG was required for adequate passive transfer of colostral immunoglobulins. Use of an oroesophageal tube for administration of 3 L of colostrum to calves within 2 hours after birth is recommended.