To study the deficiency of minerals and its relationship with Paratuberculosis, blood, serum, and fecal samples were obtained from 75 adult bovines without clinical symptoms of the disease and from two bovines with clinical symptoms of the disease, from two beef herds with a previous history of Paratuberculosis in the Province of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Serum samples were processed by ELISA and feces were cultured in Herrolds medium. Copper, zinc and iron in serum were quantified by spectrophotometry and selenium was measured by the activity of glutathione peroxidase. We also determined copper, zinc, iron and molybdenum concentrations in pastures and the concentration of sulfate in water. Mycobacterium avium subsp paratuberculosis (Map) was isolated from 17.3% of fecal samples of asymptomatic animals and from the fecal samples from the two animals with clinical symptoms. All the Map-positive animals were also ELISA-positive or suspect, and among them, 84.6% presented low or marginal values of selenium and 69.2% presented low or marginal values of copper. The two animals with clinical symptoms, and isolation of Map from feces and organs were selenium-deficient and had the lowest activity of glutathione peroxidase of all the animals from both herds. All the animals negative to Map in feces and negative to ELISA had normal values of Se, while 13.8% of animals with positive ELISA or suspect and culture negative presented low levels of Se. Half of the animals that were negative both for ELISA and culture in feces were deficient in copper but none of them presented low values of selenium. The content of molybdenum and iron in pasture was high, 2.5 ppm and 1.13 ppm in one herd and 2.5 ppm and 2.02 ppm in the other, respectively, whereas the copper:molybdenum ratio was 1.5 and 5.2, respectively. These results do not confirm an interaction between imbalances of the micronutrients and clinical Paratuberculosis, but show evidence of the relationship between selenium deficiencies in animals with Map infection and ELISA positive results.
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