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Theriogenology

Inflammatory cytokine concentrations in uterine flush and serum samples from dairy cows with clinical or subclinical endometritis.


PMID 24933095

Abstract

The objective of this study was to compare the concentrations of inflammatory cytokines in uterine flush and serum from healthy postpartum dairy cows and cows with clinical or subclinical endometritis. Clinical endometritis was diagnosed by observation of vaginal discharges (>50% pus) and subclinical endometritis was diagnosed by evaluation of uterine cytology (neutrophils >18%) at 4 weeks postpartum. Uterine flush was obtained from 48 cows at 4, 6, and 8 weeks postpartum for evaluation of tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, IL-8, and IL-10 concentrations. Serum samples were obtained from 34 cows just after calving and at 1, 2, 4, 6, and 8 weeks postpartum for evaluation of TNF-α, IL-1β, and IL-6 concentrations. Concentrations of TNF-α, IL-6, and IL-10 were greater (P < 0.05) in cows with clinical endometritis than in cows with subclinical endometritis and healthy controls, whereas concentrations of IL-8 in both cows with clinical and subclinical endometritis were greater (P < 0.005) than in controls. Overall, IL-6 and IL-10 concentrations decreased during the postpartum period. IL-1β concentrations in cows with clinical endometritis decreased (P < 0.0005) during the postpartum, whereas concentrations in cows with subclinical endometritis and controls did not change significantly with time; at 4 weeks postpartum, concentrations were greater (P < 0.0001) in cows with clinical endometritis. There were no significant effects of group, sampling time, or interaction on serum cytokine concentrations. In conclusion, cows with endometritis have greater inflammatory cytokine concentrations in uterine flush than healthy cows, but no differences were observed in serum.