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A study was made to investigate faecal thiaminase and the thiamine-related biochemical changes in apparently normal replacement ewes with a feed change, after the initiation without adaptation to the new pasture. Twenty-four female ewes were divided into two groups. Group A was managed in a system based on pasture and was compared with group B system based on a diet of concentrate and straw until moving to pasture 9 weeks after. Blood samples for lactate, pyruvate and erythrocyte transketolase activity determinations and faeces for thiaminase estimation were evaluated chronologically. At the end of a 126 days experimental period, live weights of groups were similar. We confirmed that clinically normal sheep may have thiaminase activity in the faeces and concluded that the thiaminase release increased during the diet changes, from concentrate to pasture, and that their continued excretion could develop some degree of thiamine deficiency.


J J Ramos, C Marca, L M Ferrer, A Loste, L M Cebrián. Faecal thiaminase, plasma lactate and pyruvate concentrations and erythrocyte transketolase activity changes in apparently normal replacement ewes after the initiation to the pasture. Research in veterinary science. 2006 Feb;80(1):11-6

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PMID: 16002111

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