Journal of dairy science

Effect of adding clay with or without a Saccharomyces cerevisiae fermentation product on the health and performance of lactating dairy cows challenged with dietary aflatoxin B1.

PMID 29428756


The study was conducted to examine the effect of supplementing bentonite clay with or without a Saccharomyces cerevisiae fermentation product (SCFP; 19 g of NutriTek + 16 g of MetaShield, both from Diamond V, Cedar Rapids, IA) on the performance and health of dairy cows challenged with aflatoxin B1 (AFB1). Twenty-four lactating Holstein cows (64 ± 11 d in milk) were stratified by parity and milk production and randomly assigned to 1 of 4 treatment sequences. The experiment had a balanced 4 × 4 Latin square design with 6 replicate squares, four 33-d periods, and a 5-d washout interval between periods. Cows were fed a total mixed ration containing 36.1% corn silage, 8.3% alfalfa hay, and 55.6% concentrate (dry matter basis). Treatments were (1) control (no additives), (2) toxin (T; 1,725 µg of AFB1/head per day), (3) T + clay (CL; 200 g/head per day; top-dressed), and (4) CL+SCFP (CL+SCFP; 35 g/head per day; top-dressed). Cows were adapted to diets from d 1 to 25 (predosing period) and then orally dosed with AFB1 from d 26 to 30 (dosing period), and AFB1 was withdrawn from d 31 to 33 (withdrawal period). Milk samples were collected twice daily from d 21 to 33, and plasma was sampled on d 25 and 30 before the morning feeding. Transfer of ingested AFB1 into milk aflatoxin M1 (AFM1) was greater in T than in CL or CL+SCFP (1.65 vs. 1.01 and 0.94%, respectively) from d 26 to 30. The CL and CL+SCFP treatments reduced milk AFM1 concentration compared with T (0.45 and 0.40 vs. 0.75 µg/kg, respectively), and, unlike T, both CL and CL+SCFP lowered AFM1 concentrations below the US Food and Drug Administration action level (0.5 µg/kg). Milk yield tended to be greater during the dosing period in cows fed CL+SCFP compared with T (39.7 vs. 37.7 kg/d). Compared with that for T, plasma glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase concentration, indicative of aflatoxicosis and liver damage, was reduced by CL (85.9 vs. 95.2 U/L) and numerically reduced by CL+SCFP (87.9 vs. 95.2 U/L). Dietary CL and CL+SCFP reduced transfer of dietary AFB1 to milk and milk AFM1 concentration. Only CL prevented the increase in glutamic oxaloacetic transaminase concentration, and only CL+SCFP prevented the decrease in milk yield caused by AFB1 ingestion.