Effect of the seaweed Ascophyllum nodosum on lambs during forced walking and transport.J Anim Sci. 2007 Jan; 85(1):225-32.JA
The objective of this study was to determine the effect of feeding Ascophyllum nodosum (ANOD) to lambs at 0 (control), 0.5, 1, or 2% of DMI/d for 2 wk on lamb physiology in response to forced walking and transport during hot weather. Forty-four lambs (26 kg +/- 4.3) were used, and each lamb swallowed 3 gelatin capsules filled with ANOD or their normal 16% CP, pelleted grain ration twice daily, with the amount of ANOD dependent on the treatment. The amount of ANOD did not affect ear canal temperature or cortisol concentrations during 60 min of forced walking. The range between the minimum and maximum ear canal temperature for each lamb during 12 h of transport was narrower in lambs receiving the 2% ANOD than the control group (P = 0.05), and the 2% ANOD group also had lower (P = 0.05) ear canal temperatures than the control group during hot periods of transport. After 4 (P = 0.09) and 8 h (P = 0.05) of transport, the control group tended to have greater cortisol concentrations than the 2% ANOD group. Many differences among treatments were found in plasma protein, albumin, calcium, phosphorus, glucose, blood urea nitrogen, aspartate aminotransferase, magnesium, sodium, potassium, and chloride concentrations posttransport; mainly, the control and 0.5% ANOD groups had greater (P < 0.05) concentrations than the other 2 treatments. Aldosterone concentrations were greater in the control and 0.5% ANOD group than in the 1 and 2% ANOD groups before transport, whereas the concentrations were not different after transport, suggesting pretransport concentrations were lowered by supplementation. The 1 and 2% ANOD groups lost more BW than the control group as a result of transport (P = 0.04). After transport, no differences were observed in the latency for lambs to drink, eat, or lay. There was a suppression of the IgG and IgM antibody responses at 4 and 7 d after administration of ovalbumin, with greater ANOD supplementation rates suppressing antibody response the greatest. Although ANOD decreased ear canal temperature in hot periods of transport, stabilized electrolyte concentrations, and decreased cortisol throughout transport, it also suppressed the antibody response indicating that the effect of ANOD on immune function merits further investigation.