Supplementation of sows with L-Arginine during gestating and lactation affects muscle traits of offspring related with postnatal growth and meat quality: From conception to consumption

Meat Sci. 2019 Jun;152:58-64

U. Krogh, J. A. Jensen, H. S. Møller, P. Ramaekers, M. Krøyer Rasmussen, M. Therkildsen and P. K. Theil

by N. Oksbjerg on 31/05/2019
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Meat Science


This study investigated the effect of dietary inclusion of 25 g/day of L-Arginine (n = 7) or iso‑nitrogenous amounts of alanine (n = 6) from d 30 of gestation to d 28 of lactation of sows on performance, muscle traits and meat quality in offspring. From each litter, heaviest and smallest littermate of both sexes were reared from d 28 and slaughtered at d 140 in accordance with a 23factorial design. A response to L-Arginine were obtained on small females where L-Arginine increased birth weight, however this effect disappeared at weaning. L-Arginine increased daily gain by 7% and increased the cross-sectional area of the M. semitendinosus in small females by 14%, suggesting an increased lean ratio. Mechanistic studies showed firstly, that small female littermates had increased number of muscle fibres (myogenesis) after L-Arginine treatment (11%) and secondly increased total DNA (12%) as a consequence of satellite cell proliferation. Traits describing tenderness seem to be affected by L-Arginine but further studies are needed.