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Genetic control of pig meat quality - LK0626

The aim of this project is to develop genetic predictors for meat quality in pigs. Previous MLC supported research has provided evidence on the major genetic determinants of the superior meat quality in Duroc pigs. Genetic (QTL-mapping)studies currently in progress are revealing chromosomal regions that contribute to genetic variation in components of meat quality between pig breeds, including the Duroc. The main objective of this project is the identification of the genes in these chromosomal regions that contribute to genetic variation in meat quality. To do this we will both study genes already implicated in the control of meat quality and we will isolate novel genes that may explain the breed differences. To isolate novel genes, the development of muscle in Large White and Duroc pigs will be studied in order to identify differences between the two breeds and/or genes that are expressed in a different manner. Genes that are identified in the studies of muscle development and those that are known a prori will be mapped to specific chromosomal locations. These locations will be checked for concordance with the chromosomal regions revealed by the QTL-mapping studies. Genes whose contribution to meat quality is supported by genetic studies and expression data from developing muscle will be examined in greater detail in order to identify genetic markers for, or genetic determinants of meat quality. The identification of genetic determinants of meat quality will allow a simple genetic test for the desirable genetic variant to be developed. Any tests developed will be protected by patent and disseminated to the industry via a DNA testing service. Exploitation of the test will allow rapid and targetted improvement of UK breeding stock and provide a test that gives quality assurance and allows appropriate processing of carcasses in the slaughter-house.
Project Documents
• Executive Summary : Generic control of pig meat quality   (3399k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 1999

To: 2003

Cost: £429,403
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Roslin Institute, Edinburgh (BBSRC)
Livestock Farming              
Meat Quality              
Peer Review