Relationships of Concentrations of Endocrine Factors at Antemortem and Postmortem Periods to Carcass Weight and Backfat Thickness in Pigs

  • Yun, J.S. (Department of Animal Science, Korea University) ;
  • Seo, D.S. (Department of Animal Science, Korea University) ;
  • Rhee, M.S. (Department of Animal Science, Korea University) ;
  • Oh, S. (Department of Animal Science, Korea University) ;
  • Kim, B.C. (Department of Animal Science, Korea University) ;
  • Ko, Y. (Department of Animal Science, Korea University)
  • Received : 2002.06.21
  • Accepted : 2002.11.07
  • Published : 2003.03.01


Carcass weight and backfat thickness are two of important elements in determining the carcass trait in pigs and are studied on animal genetics, nutrition, and endocrinology. Growth factors stimulate or inhibit the proliferation and differentiation of various cells. In particular, insulin-like growth factors (IGFs), transforming growth factor (TGF)-$\beta$, and epidermal growth factor (EGF) are involved in the growth and maintenance of muscle. Also, dehydroepiandrosterone-sulfate (DHEA-S) and cortisol are known to be related to the obesity and subcutaneous fat depth in pigs. Therefore, this study was performed to relate growth factors (IGFs, TGF-${\beta}1$, and EGF) and hormones (cortisol and DHEA-S) concentrations at antemortem and postmortem periods to carcass traits including carcass weight and backfat thickness. Blood and m. Longissimus were collected in pigs at antemortem (30 days before slaughter) and postmortem periods. After slaughtered, carcass weight and backfat thickness were measured. Growth factors and hormones in serum and m. Longissimus were measured by radioimmunoassay or enzyme-linked imuunosorbent assay. Before antemortem period, serum IGF-I and -II concentrations were positively correlated with the carcass weight and backfat thickness in gilts, and the concentrations of TGF- ${\beta}1$ and cortisol in barrows show the correlation with only carcass weight. Also, the positive correlations of muscular IGFs and TGF-${\beta}1$ at postmortem 45 min with the carcass weight and backfat thickness were detected. Consequently, these results suggest that the serum and muscular endocrine factors are involved in the carcass weight and backfat thickness in pigs.


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