Performance and Metabolic Responses of Young Dairy Calves Fed Diets Supplemented with Chromium Tripicolinate
Forty-two Holstein calves were used to study performance and metabolic responses when milk replacer and then postweaning starter were supplemented with 1 ppm of Cr as Cr-tripicolinate. From birth through 8 wk of age, supplemental Cr tended to improve the growth performance of bull calves but not of heifer calves. Starter intake and feed efficiency were not affected by supplemental Cr. From 1 to 5 wk of age, plasma cortisol concentrations sampled just prior to feeding decreased, and concentrations of insulinlike growth factor-I increased. All calves appeared to become less sensitive to insulin as they aged. From 1 to 5 wk of age, plasma glucose and insulin concentrations gradually diverged for all calves; glucose concentrations decreased, and insulin concentrations increased. In addition, glucose clearance rate, measured by i.v. glucose tolerance tests, was more rapid when calves were 2 wk of age than when calves were 8 wk of age. The glucose clearance rate was greater in heifer calves than in bull calves but was not affected by supplemental Cr. Entry of plasma glucose following an i.v. propionate load was also greater in heifer calves than in bull calves but was not affected by supplemental Cr. Plasma nonesterified fatty acids were lower in calves fed milk replacer or starter supplemented with Cr than in control calves, although this effect diminished as calves aged. This finding was considered to be indirect evidence of enhanced insulin sensitivity in calves fed milk replacer or starter supplemented with Cr. Overall, data suggested that supplemental Cr-tripicolinate had minor effects on the metabolism and growth performance of conventionally managed dairy calves. The most notable effects occurred during the initial few weeks at life.
Publication Source (Journal or Book title)
Journal of Dairy Science
Depew, C., Bunting, L., Fernandez, J., Thompson, D., & Adkinson, R. (1998). Performance and Metabolic Responses of Young Dairy Calves Fed Diets Supplemented with Chromium Tripicolinate. Journal of Dairy Science, 81 (11), 2916-2923. https://doi.org/10.3168/jds.S0022-0302(98)75853-9