Mastitis therapy explored | AG | kmaland.com – KMAland

Apart from antibiotics dairy farmers have few tools to treat mastitis. So researchers at Cornell Universitys College of Veterinary Medicine, are exploring compounds secreted by stem cells as a potential therapy.

The researchers previously investigated the beneficial effects of the bovine mammary stem-cell secretome. The secretome is comprised of all the compounds secreted from laboratory-grown bovine mammary stem cells. Preliminary work showed the secretome had antimicrobial properties. It prevented damage from bacterial toxins and promoted healing through the growth of blood vessels and recruitment of new cells.

Now with help from Elanco, Dr. Gerlinde Van de Walle, a veterinarian and associate professor of microbiology and immunology, and Dr. Daryl Nydam, faculty director of the department of population medicine and diagnostic services, will perform similar experiments with the secretome in actual cows. Theyre treating mastitis-infected cows using different components of the secretome to pinpoint which compounds are responsible for its beneficial effects.

Theyre looking for any antimicrobial effects, differences in milk production, signs of healing, and regeneration of the mammary tissue. They also are watching for changes in the bovine immune system that may help fight the infection and comparing the effects of different types of bovine stem cells.

The long-term goal would be a natural product that could be an adjunct or even a replacement for antibiotics, Van de Walle said.

The Foundation for Food & Agriculture Research awarded a $642,000 research grant to the Cornell researchers. If the treatment is effective and affordable, it has potential for adoption nationwide, resulting in enhanced milk production and farmer profitability, said Sally Rockey, the foundations executive director.

Elanco and the New York Farm Viability Institute contributed matching funds for a $1.4 million total investment. Addressing concerns about the increase in antibiotic-resistant bacteria, Elanco aims to provide farmers alternatives to the use of medically important antibiotics.

The research also has potential applications beyond mastitis, Van de Walle said.

If we find that naturally secreted biomolecules can both replace antibiotics and restore damaged tissue, this work could be expanded to other livestock and other diseases, she said.

Visit vet.cornell.eduand foundationfar.org and nyfvi.org for more information.

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Mastitis therapy explored | AG | kmaland.com - KMAland

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