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https://doi.org/10.5713/ab.21.0185    [Accepted] Published online August 25, 2021.
Seasons affect the phosphorylation of pork sarcoplasmic proteins related to meat quality
Xianming Zeng1  , Xiao Li1  , Chunbao Li1,* 
Key Laboratory of Meat Processing and Quality Control, MOE; Key Laboratory of Animal Products Processing, MOA; Jiangsu Synergetic Innovation Center of Meat Production, Processing and Quality Control; College of Food Science and Technology, Nanjing Agricultural University, Nanjing, 210095, China
Correspondence:  Chunbao Li, Tel: +86-25-8439-5679, Fax: +86-25-8439-5679, Email: chunbao.li@njau.edu.cn
Received: 20 April 2021   • Revised: 31 May 2021   • Accepted: 21 July 2021
Sarcoplasmic proteins include proteins that play critical roles in biological processes of living organisms. How seasons influence biological processes and meat quality of postmortem muscles through the regulation of protein phosphorylation remain to be investigated. In this study, the phosphorylation of sarcoplasmic proteins in pork longissimus muscle was investigated in four seasons.
Sarcoplasmic proteins were extracted from 40 pork carcasses (10 for each season) and analyzed through ProQ Diamond staining for phosphorylation labeling and Sypro Ruby staining for total protein labeling. The pH of muscle, contents of glycogen and ATP were measured at 45 min, 3 h and 9 h postmortem and the water (P2b, P21 and P22) was measured at 3 and 9 h.
A total of 21 bands were detected. Band 8 (heat shock cognate 71kDa protein; heat shock 70kDa protein 1B) had higher phosphorylation level in summer than that in other seasons at 45 min postmortem. The phosphorylation levels of 3 Bands were significantly different between fast and normal pH decline groups (p<0.05). The phosphorylation levels of 4 bands showed negative associations with immobilized water (P21) and positive association with free water (P22).


The phosphorylation levels of sarcoplasmic proteins involved in energy metabolism and heat stress response at early postmortem time differed depending on the seasons. These proteins include heat shock protein 70, pyruvate kinase, phosphoglucomutase-1, glucose-6-phosphate isomerase, and carbonic anhydrase 3. High temperatures in summer might result in the phosphorylation of those proteins, leading to pH decline and low WHC.
Keywords: Pork; Sarcoplasmic Proteins; Protein Phosphorylation; Season
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