1st Page

Journal of Animal Science Abstract - Animal Growth, Physiology, and Reproduction

Maternal nutritional plane and selenium supply during gestation impact visceral organ mass and intestinal growth and vascularity of neonatal lamb offspring1


This article in JAS

  1. Vol. 91 No. 6, p. 2628-2639
    Received: Oct 6, 2012
    Accepted: Mar 7, 2013
    Published: November 25, 2014

    4 Corresponding author(s):

  1. A. M. Meyer*22,
  2. T. L. Neville*,
  3. J. J. Reed*33,
  4. J. B. Taylor,
  5. L. P. Reynolds*,
  6. D. A. Redmer*,
  7. C. J. Hammer*,
  8. K. A. Vonnahme* and
  9. J. S. Caton 4
  1. Center for Nutrition and Pregnancy, Department of Animal Sciences, North Dakota State University, Fargo 58108
    USDA-ARS, U.S. Sheep Experiment Station, Dubois, ID 83423


To investigate effects of nutritional plane and Se supply during gestation on neonatal offspring visceral organ mass and intestinal growth and vascularity, 84 nulliparous Rambouillet ewes (age = 240 ± 17 d, BW = 52.1 ± 6.2 kg) were allocated to a 2 × 3 factorial design. Ewes were fed 1 of 2 Se diets [adequate Se (ASe, 11.5 µg/kg BW) or high Se (HSe, 77.0 µg/kg BW)], initiated at breeding, and 1 of 3 nutritional planes [60% (restricted; RES), 100% (control; CON), or 140% (high; HIH) of NRC requirements], initiated at d 40 of gestation. Ewes were fed individually and remained on treatments through parturition. All lambs were removed from their dams at birth and fed milk replacer. At 20.6 ± 0.9 d of age, lambs were necropsied, visceral organs dissected, and jejunal samples collected. Lambs born to ewes fed CON and HIH had greater (P < 0.05) BW, gastrointestinal tract, stomach complex, and liver masses at necropsy than RES. Large intestinal and pancreatic masses, as well as stomach complex, large intestinal, and liver proportional masses, demonstrated (P ≤ 0.08) a nutritional plane × Se supply interaction. Proportional pancreatic mass was greater (P = 0.03) for lambs born to RES ewes than HIH. Although small intestinal mass was not affected (P ≥ 0.18) by gestational treatments, lambs born to HIH-fed ewes had greater (P ≤ 0.09) jejunal DNA concentration than RES and CON, and greater (P = 0.01) total DNA than RES. Nutritional plane and Se supply interacted to affect (P ≤ 0.003) jejunal percent proliferation and total proliferating small intestinal cells, although jejunal crypt depth and villus length were not affected by gestational treatment (P ≥ 0.17). Jejunal glucagon-like peptide-2 mRNA expression was greater (P ≤ 0.07) in lambs born to ewes fed RES compared with CON and HIH. Jejunal capillary size was affected (P = 0.09) by the interaction of nutritional plane × Se supply. Lambs from CON ewes had greater (P ≤ 0.04) jejunal capillary surface density than RES. Nutritional plane and Se supply interacted to affect (P = 0.07) jejunal soluble guanylate cyclase mRNA expression in a manner opposite of capillary size. In conclusion, neonatal lamb visceral organ mass was affected by gestational nutrition, even when lambs had ad libitum intake and similar management postnatally. Despite similar small intestinal mass at 20 d of age, jejunal growth, vascularity, and gene expression were altered by maternal nutrition during gestation.

  Please view the pdf by using the Full Text (PDF) link under 'View' to the left.

Copyright © 2013. American Society of Animal Science