Establishment of the biochemical and endocrine blood profiles in the Majorera and Palmera dairy goat breeds: The effect of feed restriction

Joana R. Lérias, Raquel Peña, Lorenzo E. Hernández-Castellano, Juan Capote, Noemí Castro, Anastasio Argüello, Susana S. Araújo, Yolanda Saco, Anna Bassols, André M. Almeida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Citations (Scopus)


Feed restriction, and seasonal weight loss (SWL), are major setbacks for animal production in the tropics and the Mediterranean. They may be solved through the use of autochthonous breeds particularly well adapted to SWL. It is therefore of major importance to determine markers of tolerance to feed restriction of putative use in animal selection. Two indigenous breeds from the Canary Islands, Palmera and Majorera, are commonly used by dairy goat farmers and, interestingly, have different phenotype characteristics albeit with a common ancestry. Indeed, Majorera is well adapted to feed restriction whereas the Palmera is susceptible to feed restriction. In addition, regardless of their importance in dairy production, there are only a limited number of reports relating to these breeds and, to the best of our knowledge, there is no description of their blood metabolite standard values under control conditions or as affected by feed restriction. In this study we analysed the blood metabolite profiles in Majorera and Palmera goats aiming to establish the differential responses to feed restriction between the two breeds and to characterise their metabolite standard values under control conditions. We observed significant differences in creatinine, urea, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFAs), cholesterol, IGF-1 and T3 due to underfeeding. Furthermore, a PCA analysis, revealed that animals submitted to undernutrition could be distinguished from the control groups, with the formation of three separate clusters (Palmera individuals after 22 d of subnutrition (PE22); Majorera individuals after 22 d of subnutrition (ME22) and animals assigned to control conditions (MC0, MC22, PC0 and PC22)), highlighting different responses of the two breeds to undernutrition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)416-425
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Dairy Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015


  • Blood metabolites
  • goat
  • Majorera
  • Palmera
  • seasonal weight loss


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