Short communication: Pegbovigrastim treatment in vivo does not affect granulocyte ability to migrate to endometrial cells and kill bacteria in vitro in healthy cows

K. Tombácz, L. M. Peters, Y. M. Chang, M. Steele, D. Werling*, A. J. Gibson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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In periparturient dairy cows, immune suppression, resulting in decreased neutrophil numbers and function, leads to increased susceptibility to postpartum conditions such as mastitis, retained placenta, and metritis. Administration of polyethylene glycol-conjugated bovine granulocyte colony stimulating factor (pegbovigrastim, Imrestor; Elanco Animal Health, Greenfield, IN) 7 d before and within 24 h of calving, effectively improves granulocyte production and function in vivo as well as in milk. A recently developed coculture assay was adapted for use with endometrial epithelial cells to assess the effects of pegbovigrastim application on directed granulocyte migration and bactericidal activity in vitro on a per-cell basis in endometrial cell cultures. Granulocytes from treated and untreated periparturient cows (6 and 5 per group, respectively) were evaluated for their ability to migrate to and kill bacteria after treatment, in context of the infected endometrium. We hypothesized that in addition to increasing the absolute concentration of circulating neutrophil granulocytes, pegbovigrastim treatment in vivo alters the ability of granulocytes to migrate to endometrial cells in vitro. The results clearly show a marked increase in the total concentration of granulocytes and monocytes between the 2 treatment groups as early as 2 d after the first injection, and this increased between the samples taken 2 d after calving. No migratory or killing differences were identified between granulocytes of both groups, suggesting that pegbovigrastim-induced granulocytes were as effective as non-induced cells. This may also be due to the absence of negative energy balance in the study animals and leads us to conclude that the positive effects seen in vivo are most likely based on the larger number of granulocytes present rather than a direct effect of pegbovigrastim treatment on the functionality of cells for the parameters tested in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9389-9395
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number10
Early online date17 Jul 2019
Publication statusPublished - 01 Oct 2019


  • bacterial killing
  • endometrial cell
  • granulocyte
  • pegbovigrastim
  • periparturient period
  • Bacteria/immunology
  • Endometrium/cytology
  • Chemotaxis, Leukocyte/drug effects
  • Cattle/immunology
  • Granulocytes/drug effects
  • Recombinant Proteins/pharmacology
  • Random Allocation
  • Pregnancy
  • Animals
  • Neutrophils/drug effects
  • Energy Metabolism
  • Female
  • Leukocyte Count
  • Granulocyte Colony-Stimulating Factor/pharmacology
  • Postpartum Period/drug effects
  • Milk


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