Quarter variation and correlations of colostrum albumin, immunoglobulin G1 and G2 in dairy cows

Jaak Samarütel, Craig R. Baumrucker, Josef J. Gross, Chad D. Dechow, Rupert M. Bruckmaier

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20 Scopus citations


A high variation in immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) concentration in first milked quarter colostrum has been reported, but BSA quarter colostrum variation is not known. The occurrence of serum albumin in milk has been attributed to increased blood-milk barrier penetration. Reports of serum albumin binding to the Fc Receptor of the neonate, the receptor thought to be responsible for IgG1 transcytosis, suggested that a correlation with the appearance of IgG1 in colostrum of dairy cows was likely. The objective of the study was to establish the quarter colostrum concentration and mass of immunoglobulins and serum albumin. First colostrum was quarter collected within 4 h of parturition from healthy udders of 31 multiparous dairy cows. Individual quarter colostrum weight was determined and a sample of each was frozen for subsequent analysis. Concentrations of immunoglobulin G1, G2, and BSA were measured by ELISA and total mass of components was calculated. In addition, colostrum was also analysed for L-lactate dehydrogenase activity. Analysis of concentration and mass of BSA, immunoglobulin G1, G2 established that the quarter variations were different by cow, quarter and quarter within cow. Partial correlations corrected for colostrum weight indicated that BSA and IgG2 concentration and mass are closely correlated while that of BSA and IgG1 concentration and mass exhibited no correlation suggesting that BSA and IgG1 may have different transport mechanisms. Interestingly, immunoglobulin G1 and G2 concentration and mass exhibited strong correlations suggesting that also some unknown mechanism of immunoglobulin G2 appearance in colostrum is occurring. Finally, no measured protein exhibited any correlation with the activity of lactate dehydrogenase in colostrum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-218
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Dairy Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - May 1 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology


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