Lactational evaluation of recombinant bovine somatotropin with corn and barley diets.
Forty-eight Holstein cows were randomly assigned to receive diets containing corn or barley as the primary energy concentrate from wk 4 through 44 postpartum. During wk 14, cows from each grain source group were randomly assigned to receive 0 (control), 10.3, 20.6, and 30.9 mg/cow per d of recombinant bST injected wk 15 through 44 postpartum. Grain source exerted no significant effect on production parameters and efficacy of bST, although milk production tended to be higher with corn diets. Milk production (24.2, 29.2, 31.7, and 29.5 kg/d) and 4% FCM (21.9, 26.2, 28.1, and 28.0 kg/d) were higher for cows injected with bST, and DM intakes (20.9, 22.8, 22.0, and 23.3 kg/d) increased slightly. Percentages of milkfat (3.47, 3.28, 3.39, and 3.52) and protein (3.48, 3.44, 3.44, and 3.38) varied. Lactose, SCC, and body weights were similar for bST and dietary treatments. Diet or bST had no detectable affect on health or reproduction. Injection of bST wk 15 through 44 increased milk production 21 to 31% relative to control animals. Limiting bST use to the latter two-thirds of lactation resulted in an 8 to 17% increase in total yield with only a 0 to 5% increase in lactational DM intake.