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Article << Previous     |     Next >>   Contents Vol 52(11)

Effects of subcutaneous administration of caffeine on the physiometabolic profile of low-birthweight neonate piglets

H. Orozco-Gregorio A B, H. Bonilla-Jaime B, D. Mota-Rojas C G, M. E. Trujillo-Ortega D, P. Roldan-Santiago C, R. Martínez-Rodríguez E, F. Borderas-Tordesillas C, S. Flores-Peinado F, P. Mora-Medina F and R. Ramírez-Necoechea C

A Doctoral Program in Biological Sciences and Health, Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Iztapalapa/Xochimilco, México D.F., México.
B Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Iztapalapa, Department of Reproductive Biology, México D.F., México.
C Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana, Xochimilco, Stress Physiology and Farm Animal Welfare, Department of Animal Production and Agriculture, Calzada del Hueso 1100, Col. Villa Quietud, México D.F., 04960, México.
D Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Department of Animal Medicine and Production, Swine, Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Production, México D.F., México.
E Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Center for Teaching, Research and Extension in Swine Production (CEIEPP), Faculty of Veterinary and Animal Production, Jilotepec, Estado de México, México.
F Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Department of Livestock Sciences, Facultad de Estudios Superiores Cuautitlán, Cuautitlán Izcalli, Estado de México.
G Corresponding author. Email: dmota100@yahoo.com.mx

Animal Production Science 52(11) 981-990 http://dx.doi.org/10.1071/AN11199
Submitted: 20 September 2011  Accepted: 1 May 2012   Published: 25 July 2012

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Caffeine administration has been used to stimulate respiration and reverse metabolic alterations in high-birthweight piglets that suffer neonatal asphyxia. However, its effect has not been evaluated on low-birthweight neonates. This study determined the effect of subcutaneously administering caffeine on the physiometabolic profile of neonate piglets with low birthweight and neonatal asphyxia. A 35-mg subcutaneous dose of caffeine, or an equivalent placebo, was randomly administered at 0 and 24 h to neonate piglets (n = 120) diagnosed with intrapartum asphyxia and classified as low-(LW) or high weight (HW) in a 2 by 2 experimental design. Blood samples were obtained at 0, 2 and 24 h postpartum. At 2 h, blood glucose concentrations diminished in the animals in both groups that were treated with caffeine (P < 0.005). Of those animals, only the ones in HW showed increased glucose concentrations by 24 h. At 0 h, group LW exhibited the highest levels of pCO2 (P < 0.005). In contrast, from 2 to 24 h only the neonates in group HW treated with caffeine reached the levels of pCO2 and pO2 characteristic of non-asphyxiated piglets. At the conclusion of the experiment, the weight of the piglets in group LW that were treated with caffeine was less than that of those that received the placebo. In contrast, the weight of the piglets in group HW that were treated with caffeine was 19% higher than that of those which received the placebo (P < 0.005). In this study, administering two doses of 35 mg of caffeine to LW neonate piglets significantly accelerated their energy expenditure, thus reducing their weight gain at 8 days of life; in contrast, the physiometabolic profile of the HW neonate piglets improved and they showed greater weight gain.

Additional keywords: lactate, methylxanthine.


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