Abstract #T221

# T221
Effect of prepartum nonesterified fatty acids on milk yield and first postpartum ovulation in multiparous Holstein dairy cows.
E. Miqueo1, A. Chiarle2, M. J. Giuliodori2, A. E. Relling*1, 1Department of Animal Sciences, The Ohio State University, Wooster, OH, 2Fac. Cs Veterinarias, UNLP, La Plata, Buenos Aires Argentina.

The objective of this study was to assess the effect of prepartum nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA) concentration on first postpartum ovulation, milk yield and composition. In a completely randomized block design (3 visits to the farm), 92 prepartum multiparous Holstein dairy cows were screened for plasma NEFA concentration and top and bottom quartile were enrolled in the experiment (n = 54) and considered as high (H-NEFA, plasma NEFA concentration 294 ± 14.52 mM) and low (L-NEFA plasma NEFA concentration 122 ± 14.52 mM) plasma NEFA concentration cows. Blood samples were taken from the coccygeal vein from at a target −6 (range from −21 to 0) days related to calving to measure NEFA. Also, strip milk samples were collected twice a week after the second of 3 daily milkings, from 15 through 56 DIM or until milk progesterone concentration was ≥ 3 ng/mL (indicative of ovulation). Milk yield, milk composition, and progesterone concentration were recorded for each cow. The effect of plasma prepartum NEFA concentration on milk yield and composition were analyzed with Proc Mixed and the hazard of first postpartum ovulation was analyzed with Proc PHReg. The models included the random effect of visit and the fixed effect of NEFA (H- vs. L-NEFA). Sampling week was also included as random effect in the model for milk. NEFA had no effect on milk yield (H-NEFA = 16.45 ± 0.4 vs. L-NEFA = 16.64 ± 0.42; P = 0.738), or milk composition (fat, protein and fat:protein ratio; P > 0.1). Cows having H-NEFA had lower hazard of ovulation than herd mates having L-NEFA (HR = 0.44, 95%CI = 0.19 – 1.02, P = 0.055). Therefore, plasma NEFA prepartum might predict delayed postpartum ovulations but not milk yield or milk composition.

Key Words: NEFA, postpartum ovulation, milk yield