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Effect of dose rate and timing of administration of pegbovigrastim on white blood cell responses in grazing dairy cows

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-03, 19:01 authored by Mallory RossMallory Ross, John Roche, Axel HeiserAxel Heiser, Barbara Kuhn-Sherlock, Caleb Higham, Claire Phyn, Sally-Anne Turner
Transition dairy cows experience a decline in immune function that increases the risk of peripartum disease. One strategy to improve peripartum immune function involves the use of a commercially available cytokine: bovine granulocyte-colony stimulating factor, with the addition of polyethylene glycol to increase duration of effectiveness. Treatment with Imrestor (15 mg pegbovigrastim; Elanco) one week before expected calving date (d −7) and again on the day of calving (d 0) was previously reported to increase the neutrophil number and improve neutrophil function; as a result, the incidence of clinical mastitis was reduced. We conducted 2 experiments over consecutive years to investigate the effect of a lower dose rate (half or quarter dose rate) of Imrestor in grazing dairy cattle and reduced administration frequency: one dose instead of the recommended 2. White blood cell counts were measured to determine changes in relative cell populations in response to treatment. Neutrophil function was assessed by measuring myeloperoxidase activity. Imrestor treatment increased the numbers of neutrophils, band cells, lymphocytes, and monocytes until 14 d postcalving in a dose-dependent manner; it also increased neutrophil myeloperoxidase activity. One dose of Imrestor increased white blood cell counts and myeloperoxidase activity, but the timing, degree, and duration of the response were different relative to the recommended 2 doses and were also dependent upon when Imrestor treatment was given. One dose at d −7 relative to expected calving date did not have a lasting effect postcalving, whereas one dose only on d 0 caused a delayed effect relative to cows that received 2 doses. There was no effect of Imrestor on milk yield or on blood indicators of transition cow health. A lower dose rate of Imrestor or a single dose of Imrestor on the day of calving may be sufficient to improve neutrophil function during the early postpartum in grazing dairy cows. Large-scale field studies are required to determine whether the smaller response from lower dose rates or the timing of the immunological response to drug delivery affect animal health in early lactation.


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© 2021 American Dairy Science Association®. Published by Elsevier Inc. and Fass Inc. All rights reserved.


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Journal title

Journal of Dairy Science




Crookenden, M. A., Roche, J. R., Heiser, A., Kuhn-Sherlock, B., Higham, C. D., Phyn, C. V. C., & Turner, S.-A. (2021). Effect of dose rate and timing of administration of pegbovigrastim on white blood cell responses in grazing dairy cows. Journal of Dairy Science, 104(11), 11955–11972.

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