A quantitative trait locus (QTL) has been identified on chromosome 18 in Texel sheep (TM-QTL) that increases depth and area of the longissimus dorsi muscle. The study aimed to assess the pleiotropic QTL effects on key meat quality traits (toughness and intramuscular fat content after ≥ 7d aging) of crossbred lambs carrying one copy of the TM-QTL. The results showed that male Texel × Mule lambs carrying the TM-QTL had significantly less intramuscular fat (1.86% vs. 2.25%) and higher toughness, with increased variation, in the loin muscle, compared to non-carrier males. Similar conclusions were obtained using two different types of tenderometer equipment: one using the Volodkevitch test (average shear force of 4.17 kgF for carrier males, 2.61 kgF for non-carrier males) and one using the MIRINZ test (average shear force of 6.18 kgF for carrier males, 5.22 kgF for non-carrier males). Although most toughness measurements were within published consumer acceptability limits, a few individual TM-QTL carrier lambs had unacceptably tough meat, despite enhanced post-slaughter processing. The TM-QTL did not significantly affect loin toughness in female lambs, leg toughness in either sex, or intramuscular fat content. These results should be considered, alongside direct effects of the TM-QTL on muscling and carcass composition, in recommendations for the use of this QTL by sheep breeders.
|Translated title of the contribution||The effect of the Texel muscling QTL (TM-QTL) on meat quality traits in crossbred lambs|
|Pages (from-to)||684 - 690|
|Publication status||Published - 2010|