Supplemental material - Unraveling the immune and metabolic changes associated with metritis in dairy cows
The objective was to unravel the peripartum immune and metabolic changes associated with metritis in Holstein cows. Holstein cows (n=128) had blood collected at -14, 0, 3, and 7 days relative to parturition (DRP). Flow cytometry was used to evaluate blood leukocyte counts, proportions, and activation. Total cells, live cells (LiveDead-), single cells, monocytes (CD172α+/CD14+), polymorphonuclears (PMN; CD172α+/CD14-/SSChigh), B-cells (CD21+/MHCII+), CD4+ T-cells (CD4+), CD8+ T-cells (CD8+), and γδ T-cells (γδTCR+) were evaluated. CD62L and CD11b were used as markers of cell activation. Major histocompatibility complex class II was used as a marker of antigen presentation in monocytes. A MILLIPLEX Bovine Cytokine/Chemokine 08-plex kit was used to evaluate plasma concentrations of interferon-γ, Interleukin (IL)-1α, IL-1β, IL-4, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, and tumor necrosis factor-α. The body weight (BW) change prepartum was calculated as the difference between calving BW and prepartum BW divided by the number of days between measurements. Plasma fatty acids (FA) were measured at -14 and 0 DRP using untargeted gas chromatography with time-of-flight mass spectrometry. Data were analyzed by ANOVA for repeated measures. Cows that developed metritis (n= 57) had greater prepartum BW, prepartum BW loss, and greater FA concentrations at calving. Plasma FA at calving was positively correlated with IL-1β. Cows that developed metritis had persistent systemic inflammation, which was demonstrated by greater B-cell activation, greater pro-inflammatory cytokine concentrations, and greater cell damage pre- and postpartum. Postpartum, we observed greater polymorphonuclear cell activation and extravasation but lesser monocytes and CD4+ T-cells activation and extravasation, which suggests postpartum immune tolerance. Greater prepartum adiposity in cows that developed metritis may lead to systemic inflammation pre- and postpartum and immune tolerance postpartum, which may lead to failure to prevent bacterial infection, and development of puerperal metritis.
U.S. Department of Agriculture