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Ovine white liver disease - an hepatic dysfunction associated with vitamin B12 deficiency

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Ovine white liver disease is an economically important hepatic dysfunction which occurs in the warmer parts of New Zealand. Acute, chronic and recovered phases can be recognised clinically, histologically and biochemically. The condition is associated with severe ill-thrift and, in the acute phase, with photosensitivity. Acute and chronic cases show elevations of serum enzymes (GOT, GGT) and copper and, sometimes, bilirubin. WLD appears to affect only cobalt-deficient sheep, and we consider that it is either a metabolic consequence of vitamin B12 deficiency, or a toxic hepatopathy against which adequate levels of dietary cobalt, or tissue vitamin B12, are protective.

Keywords: Hepatic disease; Pathology; Sheep; Vitamin B12

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: November 1, 1979

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