White muscle disease in cattle

glover martin gwmartin at husc7.harvard.edu
Thu Apr 13 08:45:32 EST 1995


Eric R. Hugo (e_hugo at dsu1.dsu.nodak.edu) wrote:
: Dear Bionetters,
: 	A student of mine approached me with a question concerning
: a strange problem she and her husband are having on their cattle ranch.
: It seems that one cow in particular has given birth to three calves in three
: separate pregancies that exhibit symptoms similar to those descibed for white 
: muscle disease.  The info I have been able to dig up on this topic indicates 
: that white muscle disease is caused by either a selenium or tocopherol 
: deficiency.  It seems rather strange to me that only 1 calf out of >250 live 
: births has been exhibiting these symptoms and all three incidences have 
: occurred with the same cow.  Does anyone know of any bovine genetic disorder 
: that would produce similar symptoms? (ataxia/limb paralysis).  Or does anyone 
: have any pointers to resources on the net (I've checked as many WWW sites asI 
: could find).  Any help would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks!
: 					Eric


One genetic cause I can think of, and I don't know that much about it, is 
a defect in the selenoprotein W gene.  Or if there are symptoms 
indicating defects in thyroid hormone levels/metabolism, there may be a 
mutation in a gene responsible for selnium metabolism or the translation 
of selenoproteins in general.  Sorry to not be of more help...

Trei




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