Navigation Links
Model developed for manipulating vitamin D levels in calves

This press release is available in Spanish.

A new model for manipulating vitamin D levels in young calves has been developed by Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists who say it could help establish just how much of this important nutrient the young animals need to promote optimal growth and health.

Newborn dairy calves get crucial vitamin D in the colostrum from their mothers as they nurse during the first few days after birth. Later, the neonatal calf often receives vitamin D in commercial milk replacers. But levels of vitamin D in these supplements may need to be reevaluated, given recent evidence suggesting vitamin D status influences not only bone growth, but also immune function.

ARS microbiologist Brian Nonnecke and others at the ARS National Animal Disease Center in Ames, Iowa, are examining the effects of vitamin D on the calf's immune systemespecially relevant given the animal's susceptibility to infectious respiratory and intestinal diseases during its first weeks of life.

Nonnecke and his colleagues Tim Reinhardt and Ray Waters used the neonatal dairy calf as a model for evaluating the vitamin D status of calves. In the study, vitamin D status was controlled by vitamin D injections given to calves fed a vitamin-D-free milk replacer. They injected half the calves with 8,600 international units (IU) of vitamin D, and the rest with 54,000 IU of the vitamin. Using this approach, they found that vitamin D levels in the bloodstream of the young calf could be controlled in a predictable fashion.

The researchers also found that this model could be adapted to examine effects of subclinical vitamin D deficiency on the immune system of the calf. This is important, given that 8 to 10 percent of neonatal dairy calves in the United States die during the first months of life, and more than 30 percent are diagnosed with some form of clinical disease.

New studies using this model might provide support for revision of the National Research Council's current vitamin D recommendation for calves. It has the potential to allow researchers to take the next step toward determining the effects of vitamin D on the calf's immune system.


Contact: Chris Guy
United States Department of Agriculture-Research, Education, and Economics

Related biology news :

1. Genetics Society of America to host Model Organisms to Human Biology Meeting, June 12-15, 2010
2. Study paves way for new biofuels models, technologies
3. Species distribution models can exaggerate differences in environmental requirements
4. Modeling reef ecosystems focus of workshop
5. Model predicts shifts in carbon absorption by forest canopies
6. New mathematical model helps biologists understand how coral dies in warming waters
7. GENETICS 2010: Model Organisms to Human Biology Meeting
8. Stem cells used to model infant birth defect
9. Caltech and UCSD scientists establish leech as model for study of reproductive behavior
10. Model may offer better understanding of embryonic development
11. Cool model for a hot planet
Post Your Comments:
(Date:9/10/2015)... , Sept. 10, 2015 Pursuant Health ... Wellness to create an interactive, image-based health risk ... and wellness kiosk.  The unique assessment quantifies user ... number that suggests an individual,s biological age based ... as measured by the kiosk. Comprised ...
(Date:9/9/2015)... VANCOUVER, British Columbia , Sept. 9, 2015 ... achieved numerous organizational and solution-based milestones, furthering the ... the perils of online fraud. NuData ... key in enhancing the company,s growth cycle. The ... machine learning to determine good user behavior from ...
(Date:9/8/2015)...  Affectiva, global leader in emotion-sensing and analytics, ... new data solution, and version 2.0 of its ... accurate and patented science, these new offerings provide ... industries such as market research, gaming, media and ... education, HR, automotive, robotics, healthcare and wearables. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/9/2015)... SAN DIEGO , Oct. 9, 2015  DePuy ... ® Flex with Q-PACK ®  Technology**, the ... use in trauma-related extremity procedures (foot and ankle, hand ... The announcement was made here at the 2015 Orthopaedic ... (provides a natural scaffold for new bone growth) ...
(Date:10/9/2015)... Arbor, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... October 09, 2015 ... ... all around us. However, the current methods of separating those cells from their ... costly, and damaging to the cells. , To address this, Ann Arbor-based startup ...
(Date:10/8/2015)... ... October 08, 2015 , ... Researchers at the University of Washington (UW) have ... a new tool to study how diseases like dementia, Alzheimer's, and brain tumors change ... Ruikang Wang of the UW Department of Bioengineering, today in the Journal of ...
(Date:10/8/2015)...  Sorrento Therapeutics, Inc. (NASDAQ:  SRNE; Sorrento), a ... and associated pain, announced today that Dr. Henry Ji, President ... the Aegis Capital Corporation 2015 Growth Conference in ... 2015 Growth ConferenceDate:Friday, October 9, 2015Time:10:00 to 10:30 ... Wynn in Las Vegas, NV , ...
Breaking Biology Technology: