Embedded microcomputer-based force plate system validation when evaluating lameness severity differentiation under an induced synovitis model in lactating dairy cattle

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Warner, R.
Smith, B.C.
Plaengkaeo, S.
Gorden, P.J.
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Elsevier B.V.
Stalder, Kenneth
Ramirez, Brett
Associate Professor
Karriker, Locke
Morrill Professor
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Veterinary Diagnostic and Production Animal Medicine
The mission of VDPAM is to educate current and future food animal veterinarians, population medicine scientists and stakeholders by increasing our understanding of issues that impact the health, productivity and well-being of food and fiber producing animals; developing innovative solutions for animal health and food safety; and providing the highest quality, most comprehensive clinical practice and diagnostic services. Our department is made up of highly trained specialists who span a wide range of veterinary disciplines and species interests. We have faculty of all ranks with expertise in diagnostics, medicine, surgery, pathology, microbiology, epidemiology, public health, and production medicine. Most have earned certification from specialty boards. Dozens of additional scientists and laboratory technicians support the research and service components of our department.
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Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Since 1905, the Department of Agricultural Engineering, now the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been a leader in providing engineering solutions to agricultural problems in the United States and the world. The department’s original mission was to mechanize agriculture. That mission has evolved to encompass a global view of the entire food production system–the wise management of natural resources in the production, processing, storage, handling, and use of food fiber and other biological products.

In 1905 Agricultural Engineering was recognized as a subdivision of the Department of Agronomy, and in 1907 it was recognized as a unique department. It was renamed the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering in 1990. The department merged with the Department of Industrial Education and Technology in 2004.

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  • Department of Agricultural Engineering (1907–1990)

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Bovine lameness has relatively large negative economic and welfare implications on the U.S. dairy industry. Due to the ramifications, early lameness detection will aid in assisting dairy producers to mitigate downstream effects through early treatment. The objective of this study was to determine the minimum standing time required among 2-, 3-, 4-, 5-, and 10 min time intervals to obtain an accurate weight distribution estimate for each leg when attempting to detect lameness. An embedded microcomputer-based force plate system was developed to measure vertical forces from individual cow limb weight distribution to detect bovine lameness when utilizing an induced synovitis lameness model. The force plate has four quadrants, with each load cell quadrant measuring the force placed on it from a single limb. The force plate recorded weight (kg) every second from each load cell quadrant, after which, a 60 s moving average for weight distribution was calculated. A sequential study design was employed to evaluate non-lame and induced lameness to ensure time requirements were consistent. Prior to induction, the force plate system was used to measure weight distribution every second for 15 min. After lameness induction, additional 15 min increments were recorded every 24 h for seven days. Lameness was induced by injecting the left hind distal interphalangeal joint in three cows with amphotericin B, 12 h prior to the start of the study. Data were analyzed using a linear mixed effect that included the fixed effects of day relative to lameness induction, time period, foot and injected foot. Cow within replicate was included as a random effect. Cumulative minutes were assessed up to 15 min by comparing the least square rolling 60 s cumulative means expressed as a percentage of each animal’s BW percentage placed on each leg for 2-, 3-, 4-, 5-, and 10 min intervals. Results indicate that the minimum time needed for accurate lameness detection in cows was 2 min.
This article is published as Warner, R., B. C. Smith, K. J. Stalder, L. A. Karriker, S. Plaengkaeo, B. C. Ramirez, and P. J. Gorden. "Embedded microcomputer-based force plate system validation when evaluating lameness severity differentiation under an induced synovitis model in lactating dairy cattle." Animal 15, no. 12 (2021): 100415. DOI: 10.1016/j.animal.2021.100415. Copyright 2021 The Author(s). Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0). Posted with permission.