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Inflammation and oxidative stress transcription profiles due to in vitro supply of methionine with or without choline in unstimulated blood polymorphonuclear leukocytes from lactating Holstein cows.

  • Lopreiato, V1
  • Vailati-Riboni, M2
  • Bellingeri, A1
  • Khan, I3
  • Farina, G4
  • Parys, C5
  • Loor, J J6
  • 1 Department of Animal Sciences, Food and Nutrition, Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Science, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, 29122 Piacenza, Italy. , (Italy)
  • 2 Mammalian NutriPhysioGenomics, Department of Animal Sciences and Division of Nutritional Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana 61801. , (Mali)
  • 3 Faculty of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Sciences, University of Agriculture, Peshawar, 25120, Pakistan. , (Pakistan)
  • 4 Department of Veterinary Science for Health, Animal Production and Food Safety, Università degli Studi di Milano 20122, Milano, Italy. , (Italy)
  • 5 Evonik Nutrition & Care GmbH, Hanau-Wolfgang 63457, Germany. , (Germany)
  • 6 Mammalian NutriPhysioGenomics, Department of Animal Sciences and Division of Nutritional Sciences, University of Illinois, Urbana 61801. Electronic address: [email protected] , (Mali)
Published Article
Journal of Dairy Science
American Dairy Science Association
Publication Date
Nov 01, 2019
DOI: 10.3168/jds.2019-16413
PMID: 31447151


Neutrophils are the most important polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNL), representing the front-line defense involved in pathogen clearance upon invasion. As such, they play a pivotal role in immune and inflammatory responses. Isolated PMNL from 5 mid-lactating Holstein dairy cows were used to evaluate the in vitro effect of methionine (Met) and choline (Chol) supplementation on mRNA expression of genes related to the Met cycle and innate immunity. The target genes are associated with the Met cycle, cell signaling, inflammation, antimicrobial and killing mechanisms, and pathogen recognition. Treatments were allocated in a 3 × 3 factorial arrangement, including 3 Lys-to-Met ratios (L:M, 3.6:1, 2.9:1, or 2.4:1) and 3 levels of supplemental Chol (0, 400, or 800 μg/mL). Three replicates per treatment group were incubated for 2 h at 37°C and 5% atmospheric CO2. Both betaine-homocysteine S-methyltransferase and choline dehydrogenase were undetectable, indicating that PMNL (at least in vitro) cannot generate Met from Chol through the betaine pathway. The PMNL incubated without Chol experienced a specific state of inflammatory mediation [greater interleukin-1β (IL1B), myeloperoxidase (MPO), IL10, and IL6] and oxidative stress [greater cysteine sulfinic acid decarboxylase (CSAD), cystathionine gamma-lyase (CTH), glutathione reductase (GSR), and glutathione synthase (GSS)]. However, data from the interaction L:M × Chol indicated that this negative state could be overcome by supplementing additional Met. This was reflected in the upregulation of methionine synthase (MTR) and toll-like receptor 2 (TLR2); that is, pathogen detection ability. At the lowest level of supplemental Chol, Met downregulated GSS, GSR, IL1B, and IL6, suggesting it could reduce cellular inflammation and enhance antioxidant status. At 400 µg/mL Chol, supplemental Met upregulated PMNL recognition capacity [higher TLR4 and L-selectin (SELL)]. Overall, enhancing the supply of methyl donors to isolated unstimulated PMNL from mid-lactating dairy cows leads to a low level of PMNL activation and upregulates a cytoprotective mechanism against oxidative stress. Enhancing the supply of Met coupled with adequate Chol levels enhances the gene expression of PMNL pathogen-recognition mechanism. These data suggest that Chol supply to PMNL exposed to low levels of Met effectively downregulated the entire repertoire of innate inflammatory-responsive genes. Thus, Met availability in PMNL during an inflammatory challenge may be sufficient for mounting an appropriate biologic response. The Authors. Published by FASS Inc. and Elsevier Inc. on behalf of the American Dairy Science Association®. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (

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