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Gewählte Publikation:

Costa, A; Egger-Danner, C; Meszaros, G; Fuerst, C; Penasa, M; Solkner, J; Fuerst-Waltl, B.
(2019): Genetic associations of lactose and its ratios to other milk solids with health traits in Austrian Fleckvieh cows
J DAIRY SCI. 2019; 102(5): 4238-4248. FullText FullText_BOKU

The genetic correlations (r(a)) of milk lactose percentage (LP), lactose yield (LY), and ratios of LP to other milk solids with udder, metabolic, and fertility disorders have not been assessed in dairy cattle so far. To evaluate the potential role of milk lactose as indicator of cow health, 142,285 lactation records of 84,289 Austrian Fleckvieh cows were analyzed with univariate and bivariate animal models. Milk traits were on a 150-d basis and health traits were coded as binary (0/1). Other than LP and LY, 3 new phenotypes were defined and included in the present study, namely the lactose-to-fat, lactose-to-protein, and lactose-to-solids ratios. The most heritable trait was LP (0.566 +/- 0.008) and heritability of LY was much lower (0.145 +/- 0.005). Heritability estimates close to 0.50 were assessed for the ratios. The frequency of health disorders was higher in multiparous cows yielding milk with low LP (<= 4.553%) compared with cows yielding milk with high LP (>= 5.045%). Heritabilities of health traits were in the expected ranges, with the highest estimate for ovarian cysts (CYS; 0.037 +/- 0.004) and the lowest for retained placenta (0.005 +/- 0.001). Mastitis (MAS) genetically correlated with LY (0.518 +/- 0.057); considering that the amount of synthesized lactose is the key regulator of milk volume, this result confirmed that high-producing cows are more genetically susceptible to MAS than low-producing animals. Similar to MAS, ketosis (KET) was also positively genetically associated with LY (0.420 +/- 0.077) and a weak and unfavorable ra between KET and lactose-to-protein ratio was estimated (0.159 +/- 0.077). The ra of LY with milk fever (MFV) and CYS were approximately 0.20. The r(a) of LP with MAS, KET, and MFV were negative (-0.142 on average), supporting the idea that LP is a potential health indicator. Genetic correlations between health traits ranged from zero (retained placenta with MAS and CYS) to 0.463 +/- 0.090 (MAS and MFV). Results of the present study suggest that LP has potentiality to be used as indicator trait to improve udder health in Austrian Fleckvieh population.
Autor/innen der BOKU Wien:
Fürst-Waltl Birgit
Meszaros Gabor
Sölkner Johann
BOKU Gendermonitor:

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genetic correlation

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