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Research article2011Peer reviewed

The effect of a single prolonged milking interval on inflammatory parameters, milk composition and yield in dairy cows

Lakic, Branislav; Sjaunja, Kerstin Svennersten; Norell, Lennart; Dernfalk, Johanna; Östensson, Karin


A technical stop in automatic milking systems may result in a severely prolonged milking interval (PMI) with subsequent impact on milk somatic cell count (SCC). This study investigated the inflammatory reaction, milk composition and yield during SCC peak observed in composite milk after exposing cows to a single PMI of 24h. At the first milking after the PMI, a sharply increased proportion of milk polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) but marginally increased SCC were observed. The peak in SCC was not seen until morning milking day 2 after the PMI, notably, concomitantly with a decreased PMN proportion. An increase in blood lactose, milk bovine serum albumin and serum amyloid A (SAA) and a drop in milk alpha lactalbumin (ALA) were seen concomitantly with the peak in PMN. All parameters mentioned, had returned to base line after day 2. The changes in SCC and SAA had the longest duration. Lactate dehydrogenase in afternoon milk was decreased during the whole study as was also afternoon milk yield. Interleukin-1 beta could not be detected in milk at any time. SAA and ALA, respectively, may influence chemotaxis and the changed concentrations observed after the PMI might have contributed to the increased migration of PMN to milk. (C) 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Prolonged milking interval; Inflammatory indicators; Cow

Published in

Veterinary Immunology and Immunopathology
2011, Volume: 140, number: 1-2, pages: 110-118