Lactational performance effects of supplemental histidine in dairy cows: a meta-analysis

The objective of this meta-analysis was to examine the effects of supplemental His on lactational performance, plasma His concentration and efficiency of utilization of digestible His (EffHis) in dairy cows. The meta-analysis was performed on data from 17 studies published in peer-reviewed journals between 1999 and 2022. Five publications reported data from 2 separate experiments, which were included in the analyses as separate studies, therefore resulting in a total of 22 studies. In 10 studies, His was supplemented as rumen-protected (RP) His; in 1 study, 2 basal diets with different dHis levels were fed; and in the remaining experiments, free His was infused into the abomasum (4 studies), the jugular vein (3 studies) or deleted from a mixture of post-ruminally infused AA (4 studies). The main forages in the diets were corn silage in 14 and grass silage in 8 studies. If not reported in the publications, the supplies of dietary CP, metabolizable protein (MP), net energy of lactation and digestible His (dHis) were estimated using NRC (2001). An initial meta-analysis was performed to test the standard mean difference (SMD = raw mean difference of treatment and control means divided by the pooled standard deviation of the means) in production parameters between His-supplemented groups vs. control. Further, regression analyses were also conducted to examine and compare the relationships between several response variables and dHis supply. Across studies, His supplementation increased plasma His concentration (SMD = 1.39; 95% CI: 1.17– 1.61), as well as DMI (SMD = 0.240; 95% CI: 0.051– 0.429) and MY (SMD = 0.667; 95% CI: 0.468–0.866), respectively. Further, milk true protein concentration (MPT; SMD = 0.236; 95% CI: 0.046–0.425) and yield (MTPY; SMD = 0.581; 95% CI: 0.387–0.776) were increased by His supplementation. Notably, the increase in MTP concentration and MTPY were 3.9 and 1.3 times greater for studies with MP-deficient (according to NRC 2001) diets compared with studies with MP-adequate diets. The regression analyses revealed that production parameters (DMI, MY and MTPY) responded in a curvilinear manner to increasing His supply. Further, there was a difference in the magnitude of change in MTPY and plasma His concentration with the level of His supply and between His supplementation methods, being greater for infused His compared with RPHis. Lastly, a linear and negative relationship between EffHis and the ratio of total digestible His to net energy for lactation supply was observed, indicating an important interaction between dHis and energy supply and EffHis, i.e., utilization of dHis to support protein export. Overall, these analyses confirm His as an important AA in dairy cattle nutrition.



Work Title Lactational performance effects of supplemental histidine in dairy cows: a meta-analysis
Open Access
  1. S. E. Räisänen
  2. H. Lapierre
  3. W. J. Price
  4. Alexander Hristov
  1. Histidine
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Other
  1. Journal of Dairy Science
Publication Date 2023
  1. Dairy Nutrition
  1. English
Geographic Area
  1. USA
Related URLs
Deposited March 20, 2023




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Version 1

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  • Added Creator S. E. Räisänen
  • Added Creator H. Lapierre
  • Added Creator W. J. Price
  • Added Creator Alexander Hristov
  • Added Räisänen et al. 2023 His meta-analysis Supplemental Material.pdf
  • Updated License Show Changes
  • Published
  • Updated Keyword Show Changes
    • histidine
    • Histidine
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