IMR Press / FBL / Volume 27 / Issue 7 / DOI: 10.31083/j.fbl2707200
Open Access Original Research
Selenium Concentration in Cattle Serum and Fodder from Two Areas in Ethiopia with Contrasting Human Selenium Concentration
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1 Center for Food Science and Nutrition, Addis Ababa University, 1176 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
2 Department of Food Science and Applied Nutrition, Addis Ababa Science and Technology University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
3 Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, Keppel Street, WC1E 7HT London, UK
4 Animal and Human Health Program, International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), 1138 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
5 International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT), 1138 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
6 Inorganic Geochemistry, Centre for Environmental Geochemistry, British Geological Survey, NG12 5GG Nottingham, UK
7 School of Biosciences, University of Nottingham, Sutton Bonington Campus, Loughborough, LE12 5RD Leicestershire, UK
8 Rothamsted Research, West Common, Harpenden, AL5 2JQ Hertfordshire, UK
*Correspondence: (Dawd Gashu)
Academic Editor: Elad Tako
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2022, 27(7), 200;
Submitted: 25 March 2022 | Revised: 24 April 2022 | Accepted: 10 May 2022 | Published: 24 June 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Micronutrients)
Copyright: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by IMR Press.
This is an open access article under the CC BY 4.0 license.

Introduction: Selenium (Se) is an essential mineral for livestock health and productivity. In cattle, Se deficiency is associated with delayed conception, growth retardation, and increased morbidity and mortality. Methods: We conducted a survey of cattle serum (n = 224) and feed (n = 81) samples from two areas with contrasting human and cereal grain Se concentration in Ethiopia. The fodder samples include stover, straw, hay and pasture grass. Se concentration of the samples were measured using inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry. Results: Serum Se concentration ranged from 14.9 to 167.8 μg L-1 (median, 41.4 μg L-1). Cattle from East Amhara had significantly greater serum Se concentration compared to cattle from West Amhara (median: 68.4 μg L-1 vs 25.7 μg L-1; p < 0.001). Overall, 79.8% of cattle had Se deficiency (<81 μg L-1). All of the cattle from West Amhara were Se deficient compared with 62.5% of those from East Amhara. State of lactation of cows or age of cattle was not associated with serum Se concentration. The Se concentrations of feed samples ranged from 0.05 to 269.3 μg kg-1. Feed samples from East Amhara had greater Se concentration than samples from West Amhara. Cow serum and cattle feed Se concentrations showed strong spatially correlated variation, with a strong trend from East to West Amhara. Conclusions: This study shows that cattle Se deficiency is likely to be highly prevalent in Ethiopia, which will negatively affect the health and productivity of livestock. The deficiency appears to be geographical dependent. More extensive surveys to map Se concentration in soil-feed-livestock-human cycle are required in Ethiopia and elsewhere.

Amhara region
cattle feed
cattle selenium deficiency
INV-009129/Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Fig. 1.
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