Zinc, Selenium and Copper Supplementation Through Reticulum-Rumen Pellets and Its Effect on the Rate of Cellular and Humoral Reactions in Sheep

Veterinarni Medicina 38, 1993, 597-607

The objective of the study was to test the effectiveness of Zn, Se and Cu supplementation through reticulum-rumen pellets and its effects on the rate of cellular and humoral reactions in sheep. An experiment included 12 lambing ewes of the Merino breed at the age of two years. Zn-containing pellets were applied via rumen to three lambing ewes at the end of November, Se pellets were applied to other three lambing.ewes Cu pellets to other three ewes. Three lambing ewes were control. Blood samples were taken from the v. jugularis from all the investigated ewes before bolus administration, in month 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 7 after application. Zn, Se and Cu concentrations in the blood serum were determined by atomic absorption spectrophotometry. Immune reactions were evaluated from the concentrations of serum immunoglobulins (IgC), albumin (ALB), total proteins (TP), from phagocytic activity (PA), phagocytic index (PI), migration-inhibitory test (MIT) and determination of tetrazolium-reductase activity of phagocytes (INT-test). In comparison with the starting values, the highest increase in zincemia (80 %) was recorded in the lambing ewes administered zinc boluses as soon as in the lst month after administration. A significant difference in Zn concentrations between the zinc-pellet group and the control animals was observed in the 1st month after administration (P < 0.01). An increase in Se concentrations in the blood serum was observed in the lambing ewes administered selenium boluses in the lst month after administration. Se content in the blood serum of the given group of ewes was highest at the end of observation (2.72 +/- 0.29 mumol/l). A statistically significant difference in Se content between the group of selenium-bolus ewes and the control ewes was confirmed at a significance level P < 0.05 in the 1st and 2nd month of the experiment. Cu concentrations in the blood serum in the Cu-bolus ewes increased in the 1st month if compared with the starting values. The highest Cu concentration in the blood serum was recorded in the given group within month 4 to 7 of the experiment (16.53 +/- 2.72, or 21.23 +/- 4.40 mumol/l). There were significant differences in cupremia between the Cu-pellet group of ewes and the control animals (P < 0.05). In comparison with the starting values, the highest increase in TP concentrations were determined in the Cu-pellet ewes in the 4th, 6th and 7th months. Albuminemia dynamics in the experimental animals and in the control group did mt vary significantly. A trend of the highest immunoglobulinemia during the experiment was apparent in the ewes administered Se and Cu boluses. Significant differences in the concentrations of serum IgC between the groups of Cu-pellet ewes and the control were recorded in the 4th, 6th and 7th months (P < 0.05, or P < 0.01) while between the Se-bolus animals and the control it was in the 6th month (P < 0.05). The experimental ewes had an insignificantly higher per cent of PA in the experiment. All the experimental groups had the statistically insignificantly higher PI in the 1st, 2nd, 6th and 7th months of observation in comparison with the control animals. After the polyclonal activation of ewe lymphocytes with phytohemagglutinin in MIT there was no significant difference in the migration index depending upon Se, Cu and Zn administration in comparison with the control group. The index of metabolic surge in the INT-test had the highest values in the experiment in the ewes administered Zn-containing pellets. Significant differences in the index of metabolic surge were confirmed between the Zn-pellet group of ewes and the control animals in the 6th and 7th months (P < 0.05). The results of the experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of the tested reticulum-rumen boluses used in Zn, Cu and Se supplementation in ewes. The administration of these pellets can positively influence the animal immunity, which is advantageous particularly in the animals with a long-range deficit of microelements

FULL PAPER on request
« back