To assess the effects of dietary conjugated linoleic acids (CLA) on meat composition and intramuscular collagen (IMC), 144 New Zealand White rabbits, half males half females, 55 days old (1.8 kg LW), were assigned to three weight- and sex- balanced groups and given the following dietary supplements: 0.5% sunflower oil, (C); 0.25% sunflower oil plus 0.25% CLA (T1); and 0.5% CLA (T2). The CLA was prepared from sunflower oil and contained 65% CLA isomers, half cis-9, trans-11 and half trans-10, cis-12. Six males and six females from each group (total 36) were slaughtered at 76, 90 and 104 days of age (corresponding to 2.5, 2.8, and 3.1 kg BW, respectively). The lean fraction was higher and the water content significantly higher in the meat of T2 compared to C and T1 for all ages combined. At the third slaughtering (104 days) the meat fat content was significantly lower in group T2. For all ages combined, IMC content, IMC hydroxylysylpyridinoline (HLP) concentration (index of collagen cross-linking) and IMC maturity (HLP/IMC) were significantly lower in the intermediate supplementation group (T1) compared to C and T2, and were also lower in animals slaughtered at 90 days. CLA supplementation has limited effects on the chemical composition of rabbit meat, with positive effects on meat texture and tenderness after supplementation up to 35 days at 0.25%, and a significant decrease in fat content only at high slaughter weight and high supplementation level (0.5%).
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||10.1016/S0309-1740(03)00024-X|
|Codice identificativo ISI:||000186104100012|
|Codice identificativo Scopus:||2-s2.0-0042858172|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|