Research-Article| Volume 65, ISSUE 9, P1765-1770, September 1982

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Absorption of Colostral Immunoglobulin G in the Newborn Dairy Calf1

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      Five groups of eight newborn calves were used to study absorption of colostral immunoglobulin G. One feeding of 2 liters of pooled colostrum was given at one of 6, 12, 24, 36, or 48 h after birth. Concentrations of immunoglobulin G in blood plasma and feces were measured by an immunodiffusion technique. Plasma volume and fecal excretion also were measured. When colostrum was given 6 h after birth, 65.8% of the ingested immunoglobulin G appeared in the plasma. This percentage declined rapidly to reach 46.9%, 11.5%, 6.7%, and 6.0% when colostrum was given at the ages of 12, 24, 36, and 48 h. Total fecal immunoglobulin G increased linearly with age. The quantities not recovered from plasma and feces reached a maximum when colostrum was given at 24 or 36 h after birth. Immunoglobulin G can be “lost” to a great extent via routes other than plasma and feces during this time. Quantities of immunoglobulin G measured in plasma represent apparent rather than true absorption.


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