Limits...
Influence of Different Housing Systems on Distribution, Function and Mitogen-Response of Leukocytes in Pregnant Sows.

Grün V, Schmucker S, Schalk C, Flauger B, Weiler U, Stefanski V - Animals (Basel) (2013)

Bottom Line: In pig production, pregnant sows are either housed in individual crates or in groups, the latter being mandatory in the EU since 2013.We found lower blood lymphocyte numbers (p < 0.01) in individually housed as opposed to group-housed sows, an effect due to lower numbers of cytotoxic T cells, naive TH cells, and CD8⁺ gd-T cells.Possible implications and underlying mechanisms for the endocrine and immunological differences are discussed.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Behavioral Physiology of Farm Animals, Institute for Animal Husbandry and Animal Breeding, University of Hohenheim, Garbenstr. 17, 70599 Stuttgart, Germany. gruen@uni-hohenheim.de.

ABSTRACT
In pig production, pregnant sows are either housed in individual crates or in groups, the latter being mandatory in the EU since 2013. The consequences of different housing conditions on the immune system are however poorly investigated, although immunological alterations may have severe consequences for the animal's health, performance, and welfare. This study assessed measures of blood celluar immunity with special emphasis on T cells in pregnant German Landrace sows either housed in individual crates or in a social group. Blood samples were taken at four samplings pre partum to evaluate numbers of lymphocyte subpopulations, mitogen-induced lymphocyte proliferation and cytokine-producing T cells. Plasma cortisol concentrations were evaluated as an indicator of stress. We found lower blood lymphocyte numbers (p < 0.01) in individually housed as opposed to group-housed sows, an effect due to lower numbers of cytotoxic T cells, naive TH cells, and CD8⁺ gd-T cells. Individually housed sows showed higher cortisol concentrations (p < 0.01), whereas lymphocyte functionality did not differ between sows of both housing systems. Possible implications and underlying mechanisms for the endocrine and immunological differences are discussed. We favor the hypothesis that differences in the stressfulness of the environment contributed to the effects, with crate-housing being a more stressful environment-at least under conditions of this study.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Mean (±SEM) plasma cortisol concentrations (ng/mL) in group-housed sows (GP, black bars) and sows kept in individual crates (CR, grey bars) 7, 6, 4, and 2 weeks pre partum. Sows kept in CR showed significantly higher plasma cortisol concentrations 2 weeks pre partum. A tendential effect was also detected 7 weeks pre partum with cortisol concentrations being higher in CR-housed sows. Tendencies are stated as tp < 0.1; Asterisks indicate significant differences between the housing systems at the respective stage of gestation: *p < 0.05; (GP: n = 18; CR: n = 10).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4494368&req=5

animals-03-01123-f004: Mean (±SEM) plasma cortisol concentrations (ng/mL) in group-housed sows (GP, black bars) and sows kept in individual crates (CR, grey bars) 7, 6, 4, and 2 weeks pre partum. Sows kept in CR showed significantly higher plasma cortisol concentrations 2 weeks pre partum. A tendential effect was also detected 7 weeks pre partum with cortisol concentrations being higher in CR-housed sows. Tendencies are stated as tp < 0.1; Asterisks indicate significant differences between the housing systems at the respective stage of gestation: *p < 0.05; (GP: n = 18; CR: n = 10).

Mentions: Individually housed sows showed higher plasma cortisol concentrations during the whole sampling period than group-housed sows (F(1,35.89) = 7,82, p < 0.01, Figure 4). Gestational stage and housing × gestational stage interaction had no effects on plasma cortisol levels [39]. Furthermore, body mass (GP: 258.8 ± 5.8 kg; CR: 252.3 ± 5.9 kg) and body mass gain (GP: 49.6 ± 2.2 kg; CR: 48.9 ± 3.7 kg) did not differ significantly between the housing systems at the end of the experimental procedure.


Influence of Different Housing Systems on Distribution, Function and Mitogen-Response of Leukocytes in Pregnant Sows.

Grün V, Schmucker S, Schalk C, Flauger B, Weiler U, Stefanski V - Animals (Basel) (2013)

Mean (±SEM) plasma cortisol concentrations (ng/mL) in group-housed sows (GP, black bars) and sows kept in individual crates (CR, grey bars) 7, 6, 4, and 2 weeks pre partum. Sows kept in CR showed significantly higher plasma cortisol concentrations 2 weeks pre partum. A tendential effect was also detected 7 weeks pre partum with cortisol concentrations being higher in CR-housed sows. Tendencies are stated as tp < 0.1; Asterisks indicate significant differences between the housing systems at the respective stage of gestation: *p < 0.05; (GP: n = 18; CR: n = 10).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4494368&req=5

animals-03-01123-f004: Mean (±SEM) plasma cortisol concentrations (ng/mL) in group-housed sows (GP, black bars) and sows kept in individual crates (CR, grey bars) 7, 6, 4, and 2 weeks pre partum. Sows kept in CR showed significantly higher plasma cortisol concentrations 2 weeks pre partum. A tendential effect was also detected 7 weeks pre partum with cortisol concentrations being higher in CR-housed sows. Tendencies are stated as tp < 0.1; Asterisks indicate significant differences between the housing systems at the respective stage of gestation: *p < 0.05; (GP: n = 18; CR: n = 10).
Mentions: Individually housed sows showed higher plasma cortisol concentrations during the whole sampling period than group-housed sows (F(1,35.89) = 7,82, p < 0.01, Figure 4). Gestational stage and housing × gestational stage interaction had no effects on plasma cortisol levels [39]. Furthermore, body mass (GP: 258.8 ± 5.8 kg; CR: 252.3 ± 5.9 kg) and body mass gain (GP: 49.6 ± 2.2 kg; CR: 48.9 ± 3.7 kg) did not differ significantly between the housing systems at the end of the experimental procedure.

Bottom Line: In pig production, pregnant sows are either housed in individual crates or in groups, the latter being mandatory in the EU since 2013.We found lower blood lymphocyte numbers (p < 0.01) in individually housed as opposed to group-housed sows, an effect due to lower numbers of cytotoxic T cells, naive TH cells, and CD8⁺ gd-T cells.Possible implications and underlying mechanisms for the endocrine and immunological differences are discussed.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Behavioral Physiology of Farm Animals, Institute for Animal Husbandry and Animal Breeding, University of Hohenheim, Garbenstr. 17, 70599 Stuttgart, Germany. gruen@uni-hohenheim.de.

ABSTRACT
In pig production, pregnant sows are either housed in individual crates or in groups, the latter being mandatory in the EU since 2013. The consequences of different housing conditions on the immune system are however poorly investigated, although immunological alterations may have severe consequences for the animal's health, performance, and welfare. This study assessed measures of blood celluar immunity with special emphasis on T cells in pregnant German Landrace sows either housed in individual crates or in a social group. Blood samples were taken at four samplings pre partum to evaluate numbers of lymphocyte subpopulations, mitogen-induced lymphocyte proliferation and cytokine-producing T cells. Plasma cortisol concentrations were evaluated as an indicator of stress. We found lower blood lymphocyte numbers (p < 0.01) in individually housed as opposed to group-housed sows, an effect due to lower numbers of cytotoxic T cells, naive TH cells, and CD8⁺ gd-T cells. Individually housed sows showed higher cortisol concentrations (p < 0.01), whereas lymphocyte functionality did not differ between sows of both housing systems. Possible implications and underlying mechanisms for the endocrine and immunological differences are discussed. We favor the hypothesis that differences in the stressfulness of the environment contributed to the effects, with crate-housing being a more stressful environment-at least under conditions of this study.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus