Relationship between endotoxin and prostaglandin (PGE2 and PGFM) concentrations and ovarian function in dairy cows with puerperal endometritis
Review articleOpen access

AbstractBlood concentrations of progesterone, 13,14-dihydro-15-keto-prostaglandin F2alpha (PGFM) and endotoxin, and uterine fluid concentrations of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2), PGFM and endotoxin were evaluated in 14 dairy cows with puerperal endometritis (mild (n=6) and heavy (n=8)). Endotoxin was measured using a quantitative kinetic assay.Cows with heavy endometritis had significantly higher concentrations of plasma PGFM (P<0.01) and uterine fluid PGE2 and endotoxin (P<0.05) than cows with mild endometritis. Concentrations of PGFM in plasma and uterine fluid, of PGFM and PGE2, and PGE2 and endotoxin in uterine fluid were positively and significantly (P<0.05) correlated.The presence of endotoxin in plasma was detected in one out of six mild and in eight out of eight heavy endometritis cows. Peak plasma endotoxin concentrations (0.08–9.14 endotoxin units/ml (EU/ml) were observed between 1 and 12 days postpartum (pp) and thereafter amounts generally remained below 0.1 EU/ml (last day of detection: Day 27 pp). Abnormal ovarian function was observed in six cows (four with prolonged anoestrus and two with long luteal phase after the first postpartum ovulation). Plasma endotoxin concentrations were detected in the anoestric cows.The results suggest that: (i) concentrations of uterine fluid endotoxin and PGE2 and of plasma PGFM are related to the degree of endometritis; (ii) absorption of endotoxin from the uterus to the bloodstream occurs, mainly in heavy endometritis cows; and (iii) there is a relationship between uterine infection, endotoxin production and resumption of pp ovarian activity.

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