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Effect of selenium and vitamin E on antibody production by dairy cows vaccinated against Escherichia coli
  1. N. Panousis, DVM, PhD1,
  2. H. Karatzias, DVM, PhD1,
  3. N. Roubies, BSc, PhD2,
  4. A. Papasteriadis, DVM,PhD2 and
  5. S. Frydas, DVM, PhD3
  1. 1 Clinic of Productive Animal Medicine
  2. 2 Laboratory of Clinical Diagnosis and Clinical Pathology
  3. 3 Department of Parasitology and Parasitic Diseases, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, GR 54006, Greece


Sixty clinically healthy Holstein cows were randomly assigned to one of four groups according to their age and parity and vaccinated in late pregnancy (day 190) with a multivalent vaccine against Escherichia coli. The 15 cows in the first group (SeE) were injeded intramuscularly with a solution of sodium selenite (0.1 mg Se/kg bodyweight) and vitamin E (α-tocopherol acetate, 8 U/kg bodyweight), the cows in the second group (Se) received only selenium and the cows in the third group (E) received only vitamin E at the same doses and by the same route of administration; the cows in the fourth group were used as controls. The vaccination and the injections of selenium and vitamin E were repeated 42 days later. The concentration of selenium in whole blood and of vitamin E in serum was determined by fluorometric methods. Specific antibody titres against E coli were determined in serum samples by ELISA. The results showed that the injection of selenium either alone or in combination with vitamin E significantly improved the production of specific antibodies against E coli, and that the production of specific antibodies was greater after the administration of selenium alone.

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