Genotypic effects of the Texel Muscling QTL (TM-QTL) on meat quality in purebred Texel lambs
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Texel Muscling QTL (TM-QTL) increases loin muscling in lambs inheriting it from their sire only. This study investigated TM-QTL effects on meat quality in 209 Texel lambs that were CT-scanned then slaughtered at 20 weeks (carcasses aged for ~ 1 week). Loin meat quality traits included: CT-measured muscle density (predicting intramuscular fat); mechanical tenderness using Volodkevich-type jaws or MIRINZ tenderometer; intramuscular fat; sensory eating quality (sub-sample of 40 lambs). Volodkevich tenderness was also measured in the leg (Vastis lateralis). TM-QTL genotypes were determined, giving 40 non-carriers (+/+), 70 heterozygotes—53 inheriting TM-QTL from the sire (TM/+) and 17 from the dam (+/TM), 34 homozygote TM-QTL lambs (TM/TM) and 65 uncertain. Multiple regression identified no genotype effects on meat quality. For MIRINZ-measured loin tenderness only, contrasts revealed a significant additive effect of TM-QTL (1.27 kgF difference between homozygotes). However, the taste panel identified no significant differences between +/+ and TM/TM lambs. Results show little evidence of TM-QTL affecting meat quality.
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