[Frontiers in Bioscience 8, s258-264, May 1, 2003]
THERMAL CHRONOBIOLOGY OF DOMESTIC ANIMALS
Giuseppe Piccione 1 and Roberto Refinetti 2
1Dipartimento di Morfologia, Biochimica, Fisiologia e Produzioni Animali, Facoltà di Medicina Veterinaria, Università degli Studi di Messina, 98168 Messina, Italy, and 2 Circadian Rhythm Laboratory, University of South Carolina, Walterboro, SC 29488, USA
TABLE OF CONTENTS
This article reviews the literature on the circadian and estrous rhythms of body temperature in farm animals. Although most research in this area has lacked the methodological sophistication of research conducted on laboratory animals, the experimental results are consistent with the general principles of thermal chronobiology derived from laboratory studies and, at the same time, provide specific information about the peculiarities of livestock species. Detailed knowledge of the normal parameters of the body temperature rhythms is important for the advancement of diagnostic procedures in veterinary medicine and for the optimization of farm yield in the dairy and meat industry.