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Meat Sci. 2013 Nov;95(3):744-54. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.01.016. Epub 2013 Feb 15.

Associations between muscle gene expression pattern and technological and sensory meat traits highlight new biomarkers for pork quality assessment.

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  • 1INRA, UMR1348 PEGASE, F-35590 Saint-Gilles, France; Agrocampus Ouest, UMR1348 PEGASE, F-35000 Rennes, France.


Meat quality (MQ) results from complex phenomenon and despite improved knowledge on MQ development, its variability remains high. The identification of biomarkers and the further development of rapid tests would thus be helpful to evaluate MQ in pork industries. Using transcriptomics, the present study aimed at identifying biomarkers of eight pork quality traits: ultimate pH, drip loss, lightness, redness, hue angle, intramuscular fat, shear force and tenderness, based on an experimental design inducing a high variability in MQ. Associations between microarray gene expression and pork traits (n=50 pigs) highlighted numerous potential biomarkers of MQ. Using quantitative RT-PCR, 113 transcript-trait correlations including 40 of these genes were confirmed (P<0.05, |r|≤0.73), out of which 60 were validated (P<0.05, |r|≤0.68) on complementary experimental data (n=50). Multiple regression models including 3 to 5 genes explained up to 59% of MQ trait variability. Moreover, functional analysis of correlated-trait genes provided information on the biological phenomena underlying MQ.

Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Biomarkers; Functional analysis; Longissimus muscle; Pork quality; Real-time quantitative RT-PCR; Transcriptomics

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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