Influence of nitrogen and sulfur intake on bovine uterine pH throughout the luteal phase Academic Article uri icon


  • Previous research has reported that diets high in protein and sulfur decreased uterine pH in cattle. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of high N and high S intake on uterine pH. Holstein (n = 15) and Angus-cross (n = 5) heifers (337.5 ± 8.4 kg of BW) were randomly assigned to 1 of 4 diets: control (CON; 13.4% CP and 0.17% S); high nitrogen (HN; CON plus urea supplement); high sulfur (HS; CON plus calcium sulfate); or both high nitrogen and sulfur (HNS). Diets were individually fed at 2.6% of BW on a DM basis using Calan gates and estrus was synchronized to occur on d 13 (d 0 = start of dietary treatment). Blood samples were collected on d -2 and daily (d 1 to 28) at 1400 h to determine concentrations of plasma urea nitrogen (PUN), sulfate (d 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, 20, 24, and 28), and progesterone. Uterine pH was measured on d 16, 20, 24, and 28 (d 3, 7, 11, and 15 of the estrous cycle). There was a treatment, time, and treatment by time interaction (P < 0.01) on concentrations of PUN. There was an effect of treatment (P < 0.01) on concentrations of sulfate, with concentrations being increased in HS compared with CON, HN, and HNS (P < 0.01), and HNS increased compared with CON (P < 0.01) and HN (P < 0.01). Uterine pH was increased in HN and HNS compared with CON (P < 0.02), whereas HS was not different from any treatment (P > 0.11). There was no effect of time (P = 0.26) or treatment by time interaction (P = 0.71) on uterine pH. In summary, uterine pH was increased in HN and HNS compared with CON, whereas HS was intermediate and was associated with increased concentrations of PUN.

author list (cited authors)

  • Grant, J. K., Steichen, P. L., Wright, C. L., Vonnahme, K. A., Bauer, M. L., Jennings, J. S., & Perry, G. A.

citation count

  • 3

publication date

  • December 2012