Updated research findings with acidosis, feedlot bloat, liver abscesses, and sudden death syndromes were presented at the Bud Britton Memorial Symposium on Metabolic Disorders of Feedlot Cattle. Possible industry applications include the need to establish guidelines for use of clostridial vaccines in feedlot cattle, further assessment of the relationship between acidosis and polioencephalomalacia, examination of the effects of various ionophores on the incidence of metabolic disorders, and evaluation of the effects of feed bunk management and limit- and restricted-feeding programs on the incidence of metabolic disorders. A multidisciplinary approach among researchers, consulting nutritionists and veterinarians, and feedlot managers will be required for effective progress in research and in the application of research findings. Areas suggested for further research include 1) assessment of feed consumption patterns and social behavior of cattle in large-pen, feedlot settings; 2) evaluation of the relationship between feed intake management systems (feed bunk management programs, limit- and programmed-feeding) and the incidence of metabolic disorders, including delineation of the role of variability in feed intake in the etiology of such disorders; 3) efforts to improve antemortem and postmortem diagnosis, and to establish standardized regional or national epidemiological databases for various metabolic disorders; 4) ascertaining the accuracy of diagnosis of metabolic disorders and determining the relationship of previous health history of animals to the incidence of metabolic disorders; 5) further defining ruminal and intestinal microbiology as it relates to metabolic disorders and deeper evaluation of metabolic changes that occur with such disorders; 6) continued appraisal of the effects of grain processing and specific feed ingredients and nutrients on metabolic disorders, and development of new feed additives to control or prevent these disorders; and 7) application of biotechnology to develop grain varieties with altered nutrient degradation profiles that decrease the propensity for disastrous acid loads in the rumen, feed-grade enzymes and probiotics that modify nutrient digestion or microbial profiles in the rumen and intestine, and specific strains of ruminal bacteria and protozoa that alter ruminal and metabolic conditions that may precipitate metabolic disorders.
- Beef Cattle
- Liver Abscesses