Understanding the enzymatic activity in ruminant digestive systems is essential for securing adequate growth, reproduction and overall metabolism. In order to evaluate the impact of various nutritional sources and dietary strategies on enzymatic activity, five experiments were designed. Experiment 1 examined the influence of nutrient restriction and melatonin supplementation on maternal and fetal pancreatic development. Experiment 2 explored various phases of the reproductive cycle and the impact of intravenous arginine infusion amid differing levels of feed intake. Experiment 3 determined the effectiveness of realimentation during advancing stages of gestation. Experiments 4 and 5 examined the impact of variable rations on ruminal pH, NH3, VFA, total gas and methane concentration and enzymatic activity in steers consuming rations of fine- vs coarse-rolled corn and 20% vs 40% DDGS (Experiment 4) and corn vs barley based diets with low- vs moderate-oil DDGS (Experiment 5). Overall, nutrient restriction caused reduced BW, pancreatic mass and pancreatic enzyme activity in mature animals. In Experiment 1, the addition of dietary melatonin diminished the impact of nutrient restriction on maternal pancreatic mass and α-amylase activity while reducing the secretion of insulin and size of insulin-containing cell clusters. Fetal pancreatic enzymes were unaffected by treatment, however, pancreatic morphology exhibited greater insulin-containing cell cluster size in fetuses from adequately fed dams. In Experiment 2, arginine infusion did not alter pancreatic exocrine or endocrine function during the various luteal stage phases. In Experiment 3, realimentation during different stages of gestation decreased the impact of reduced feed intake and, in some cases, allowed for compensatory gain of the exocrine pancreas. The maternal and fetal endocrine pancreas was unaffected. Mature animals had greater changes in pancreatic exocrine secretions whereas fetuses differed mainly in endocrine function as a result of improper nutritional status. Comparison of pancreatic tissue revealed a greater quantity, and larger size, of insulin-containing cell clusters in fetuses which appear to separate as the animal matures. Differences in rumen enzymatic activity was found in Experiments 4 and 5, however, despite changes in lag time of gas production or ruminal degradation rates, the concentration of greenhouse gases (CH4 or CO2) produced were unaffected.
|Advisor:||Swanson, Kendall C.|
|Commitee:||Bauer, Marc L., Caton, Joel S., Reynolds, Lawrence P., Sedivec, Kevin K.|
|School:||North Dakota State University|
|School Location:||United States -- North Dakota|
|Source:||DAI-B 78/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Enzyme, Methane, Pancreas, Rumen|
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