Colostrum is a nutrient and immunoglobulin rich fluid that is produced by the ewe shortly before parturition. Besides nutrients and immunoglobulins, colostrum also contains a wide variety of components essential to ensure the survival of a new-born lamb, it is critical to lamb survival – insufficient intake of colostrum is a major cause of neonatal fatalities.
Colostrum requires a lot of investment, energy-wise by the ewe, so if she gives birth to multiple offspring, it can be very demanding to keep up with the amount of colostrum required by her lambs. For maximum efficacy, new born lambs must consume the required amount of colostrum (around 1L) within the first 18 hours of life, putting even more pressure on the ewe.
The immune system has become adapted to ensure that ‘self’ cells are not subject to an immune attack. The body is able to do this because tolerance is developed towards self-cells, should this tolerance be broken down by some means, the host becomes subject to autoimmune attacks which can be potentially damaging.
A tumour is a swelling of part of the body caused by abnormal cell growth, this occurs when the normal cell division process becomes unregulated and cells proliferate uncontrolled. This results in cloned cells of the original defective cell, leading to a neoplasm – a new growth of tissue in the body that is [...]
A parasite is an organism which lives on or in another organism called the host. The parasite needs the host to live, but the host gains no benefit from having the parasite. The 3 main classes of parasite are protozoa (unicellular organisms), worms, and arthropods (insects and arachnids).
In comparison to acute bacterial or [...]
Any new-born animal is born from a sterile environment (e.g. a mother’s womb) into an environment which is filled with microbes and pathogens. Therefore it is important that the newly born animal is able to protect itself in its new, harsh environment. In most species (especially those with longer gestation periods) at birth, the [...]
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