A meta-analysis of the effect of biotin on production outcomes of dairy cattle was conducted following a literature review. A total of 11 studies from 9 papers, with information on the milk production and composition data from a total number of 238 cows were extracted and analyzed using meta-analysis software in Stata. Estimated size of effect of biotin was calculated for dry matter intake (DMI), milk production, and composition. Heterogeneity was not significant for all of the parameters (the highest I2=12 percent). Therefore, fixed effects models were used for analysis. With the addition of biotin to lactating dairy cattle, DMI and milk production increased by 0.87 and 1.66kg/d. No significant effect on percentage of milk fat and milk protein was observed. Additionally, Begg's test indicated no evidence of substantial publication bias for all variables. The influence analysis shows that the removal of any study did not change the direction or significance of the point estimates. It can be concluded that the use of biotin supplements increases DMI and milk yield in lactating dairy cows.
Source: B. Chen, C. Wang, Y.M. Wang, J.X. Liu/Journal of Dairy Science