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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Experimental parturient hypocalcemia in cows following prepartal chemical inhibition of bone resportion.

Cows fed a balanced diet with the required amounts of calcium and phosphorus developed acute hypocalcemia and hypophosphatemia shortly after parturition, even in the presence of the a responsive parathyroid gland, when bone resorption was selectively inhibited by the prepartal administration of disodium ethane-1-hydroxy-1, 1-diphosphonate (EHDP). When serum total and ionized calcium levels declined below 6.0 and 1.0 mg/100 ml, respectively, cows developed clinical signs similar to naturally occurring parturient paresis. The plasma immunoreactive parathroid hormone levels were similar prepartum, at parturition, and 1 day postpartum in cows administered EHDP as in control cows. Parathyroid chief cells were predominately in the actively synthesizing phase of the secretory cycle with a prominent Golgi apparatus and lamellar arrays of rough endoplasmic reticulum. Many chief cells were degranulated of mature secretory gransules. Calcitonin activity in thyroid extracts, determined by bioassay, and the numbers of secretory granules in thyroid C-cells were similar in both groups of cows. EDTA infusion after 60 days of the experiment demonstrated that the immediately available calcium reserves were reduced in EHDP-treated cows. The serum calcium remained significantly lower and did not return to preinfusion levels by 24 hours. Serum calcium in control cows returned to within the normal range by 6 hours after EDTA infusion. The urinary excretion of hydroxyproline was consistently reduced prepartum and following EDTA infusion in cows receiving EHDP. The experimental induction of parturient of parturient hypocalcemia by the prepartal administration of EHDP provides a valuable model for studies to investigate the mechanisms in bone responsible for the development of severe hypocalcemia that occurs in response to the increased calcium demand imposed by parturition and the initiation of lactation.[1]


  1. Experimental parturient hypocalcemia in cows following prepartal chemical inhibition of bone resportion. Yarrington, J.T., Capen, C.C., Black, H.E., Re, R., Potts, J.T., Geho, W.B. Am. J. Pathol. (1976) [Pubmed]
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