Apparent recovery of duodenal odd- and branched-chain fatty acids in milk of dairy cows

RJ Dewhurst*, JM Moorby, B Vlaeminck, V Fievez

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)


This study compared flows of odd- and branched-chain fatty acids (OBCFA) at the duodenum with corresponding yields in milk. Four mid-lactation Holstein-Friesian dairy cows were offered 4 dietary treatments, based on different ratios of ryegrass silage and concentrates (80:20, 65:35, 50:50, and 35:65 on a dry matter basis), in a 4 × 4 Latin square design experiment with 4-wk periods. Samples of milk and duodenal digesta were collected during the final week of each period and analyzed for fatty acids. Biohydrogenation of linoleic and α-linolenic acids (C18:2 and C18:3) was extensive for all treatments, with a tendency to be lower for C18:3 with increased concentrate feeding. The proportion of duodenal flows of these fatty acids that appeared in milk declined with increasing concentrate feeding. There was little change in the yield of OBCFA in milk in response to increasing level of concentrate inclusion and no significant relationship with the yield of microbial protein at the duodenum. The efficiency of transfer of iso C15:0 and anteiso C15:0 from the duodenum to milk was similar to that for C18:3, with a reduced proportion transferred into milk at higher flows. Yields of C15:0, C17:0, and iso C17:0 in milk were higher than duodenal flows, confirming synthesis in animal tissues.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1775-1780
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPrint publication - Apr 2007


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