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J Agric Food Chem. 1999 Mar;47(3):867-72.

Glutathione peroxidase activity, TBARS, and alpha-tocopherol in meat from chickens fed different diets.

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IRTA, Food Chemistry Unit, Meat Technology Center, 17121 Monells, Girona, Spain.


This study investigated the effect of feeding broilers with diets differing in dietary fat source (lard, sunflower oil, olive oil) and vitamin E (basal vs supplemented with 200 mg of alpha-tocopheryl acetate/kg) on meat lipid oxidative stability. The diets differed by their degree of unsaturation and included the natural antioxidant alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E). Glutathione peroxidase (GSHPx) activity was measured in raw meat and ranged from 3.62 to 8.06 nmol NADPH/min/mg protein. The enzyme activity was influenced by the degree of unsaturation of the diet. Capillary gas chromatography analyses showed that dietary alpha-tocopherol accumulated in the muscle tissue and contributed to a better oxidative stability of the raw and cooked meat. Thigh meat alpha-tocopherol levels ranged from 2.73 to 3.62 microg/g in unsupplemented chickens whereas levels from 8.69 to 13.37 microg/g were observed in the thigh meat from alpha-tocopherol supplemented animals. The inclusion of olive oil and alpha-tocopherol in the animal diet gave lower thiobarbituric acid reactive substance (TBARS) values and lower GSHPx activity. High correlations were found between the parameters studied. The results suggest that the glutathione peroxidase activity could be used as an indicator of the meat oxidative stability. A negative relationship was observed between GSHPx activity and tissue alpha-tocopherol levels, and a positive relationship was evidenced between TBARS and antioxidant enzyme activity.

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