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Bloat in cattle. XIII. The effect of orally administered penicillin on the fermentation and foaming properties of rumen contents



Bloat in cattle. XIII. The effect of orally administered penicillin on the fermentation and foaming properties of rumen contents



New Zealand Jour Agric Res 2(2): 342-354



Procaine penicillin (100,000-500,000 units) has been administered orally to one of a pair of fistulated identical-twin cows fed on cut red clover. A marked effect was produced on the foaming properties of the rumen contents of the treated animal, together with an inhibition of volatile fatty acid and ammonia production and of protein breakdown. Reducing sugars and lactic acid accumulated while soluble protein concentration rose rapidly during the feeding period. The action of penicillin in preventing bloat appears to be due to its effect on gas production and on the foaming properties of the rumen contents. It is postulated that the chloroplast fat is acting as the anti-foaming agent in the treated animal. The effect of penicillin on the rumen fermentation disappeared on repeated dosing.

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