Advancing the health and well-being of animals and people

Principal Investigator: Rodrigo Bicalho

Department of Population Medicine & Diagnostic Sciences
Sponsor: NIH-National Institute of Food and Agriculture - USDA
Grant Number: 2017-67015-26541
Title: A Possible Role for Interleukin 8 During Adaptation to Lactation
Project Amount: $484,000
Project Period: 05/15/17-05/14/20

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant):    The dairy industry is under constant pressure for maximal productivity and efficient utilization of resources. Our ultimate goal is to improve lactational performance by modulating homeorhesis and promoting metabolic health during the transition period. We have developed a recombinant interleukin 8 (rIL-8) to mitigate the incidence of uterine diseases. Besides improving uterine health, a single intrauterine infusion with rIL-8 increased milk production by 3.6 kg/day. We have replicated the results of this initial clinical trial on a second study that used 3 different doses of intrauterine rIL-8. Additionally, we have demonstrated that a single intravenous administration of rIL-8 increased milk production by 4.5kg/day. Lastly, to investigate the potential mechanism of action, we have proved that systemic administration of rIL-8 in Holstein calves induced strong and long lasting insulin resistance. Preliminary results support a systemic effect of rIL-8 on metabolic health, which likely involves control of liver function, response to insulin, and appetite.