Dietary N -carbamylglutamate and rumen-protected l -arginine supplementation during intrauterine growth restriction in undernourished ewes improve fetal thymus development and immune function

Hao Zhang, Fangfang Zhao, Haitao Nie, Tiewei Ma, Ziyu Wang, Feng Wang, Juan J. Loor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The aims of the present study were to determine whether dietary supplementation with N-carbamylglutamate (NCG) and rumen-protected l-arginine (RP-Arg) to underfed Hu sheep would improve fetal thymus development and immune function. From Day 35 to Day 110 of gestation, 32 Hu ewes carrying twin fetuses were randomly allocated to one of four groups (n = 8 per group): 100% National Research Council (NRC)-recommended nutrient requirements (CON), 50% NRC recommendations (RES), 50% NRC recommendations supplemented with 20 g day -1 RP-Arg (RES+ARG), and 50% NRC recommendations supplemented with 5 g day -1 NCG (RES+NCG). Medullary thickness was increased (P < 0.05) in RES compared with CON ewes, but was reduced (P < 0.05) in both RES+ARG and RES+NCG ewes compared with RES ewes. There were no differences in superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase activity or malondialdehyde levels in the RES+ARG and RES+NCG groups compared with the CON group (P > 0.05). Concentrations of IgA, interleukin (IL)-1β and IL-10 in fetal umbilical cord blood were reduced (P < 0.05) in RES compared with CON ewes, but were increased (P < 0.05) in both RES+ARG and RES+NCG ewes. Expression of Bax, Fas and p53 mRNA was increased (P < 0.05) in RES compared with CON ewes, but were reduced (P > 0.05) in both RES+ARG and RES+NCG ewes. These results indicate that dietary supplementation with NCG and RP-Arg could help alleviate the negative effects of intrauterine growth restriction on fetal thymus development and immune function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1522-1531
Number of pages10
JournalReproduction, Fertility and Development
Volume30
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

Keywords

  • immune function
  • sheep

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Endocrinology
  • Developmental Biology

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