Author ORCID Identifier

Date Available


Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis


Agriculture, Food and Environment


Animal and Food Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. James L. Klotz


Prior work using a contractility bioassay determined that the serotonin (5-HT) receptor subtype 5-HT2A is present in bovine lateral saphenous veins and plays a role in ergot alkaloid-induced vascular contraction in steers grazing endophyte-infected (Epichloë coenophiala) tall fescue (Lolium arundinaceum). A study was conducted to determine what 5-HT receptors are involved in vasoconstriction of bovine gut vasculature. The findings of this study indicate that 5-HT2A is present and may play a role in ergot alkaloid induced vasoconstriction. A second study was conducted to determine if ergot alkaloids were transported in the small intestine. The active transporter, peptide transporter 1 (PepT1), was evaluated for its role in the transport of various concentrations of ergot alkaloids across Caco-2 cell monolayers. Results indicate that CEPH, ERT, EXT, and LSA do move across Caco-2 cell monolayers, but appear to utilize PepT1 at larger concentrations. Overall, the demonstrated presence of 5-HT2A receptors in the bovine gut vasculature established a potential for vascular interference by ergot alkaloids entering the bloodstream through transepithelial absorption.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)