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https://doi.org/10.5713/ab.21.0227    [Accepted] Published online October 21, 2021.
Feeding strategies and ageing time alter calpain system proteins activities and meat quality of Braford steers
Maria Sumampa Coria1,2,3  , Dario Pighin3,4,5  , Gabriela Grigioni3,4,5,*  , Gustavo Adolfo Palma1,2,3,* 
1Animal Production and Reproduction Laboratory, NOA Institute of Bionanotechnology (INBIONATEC), Villa El Zanjón, Santiago del Estero, G4206XCP, Argentina
2Institute for the Agricultural Development of the Semiarid (INDEAS), Faculty of Agronomy and Agroindustry (FAyA), National University of Santiago del Estero (UNSE), Santiago del Estero, G4200ABT, Argentina
3National Council of Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET), Buenos Aires, C1033AAJ, Argentina
4Food Technology Institute - Science and Technology Institute of Sustainable Food Systems, National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA) and National Council of Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET), Buenos Aires, C1033AAJ, Argentina
5Faculty of Agriculture and Food Sciences, Moron University, Morón, Buenos Aires, B1708JPD, Argentina
Correspondence:  Gabriela Grigioni,Email: grigioni.gabriela@inta.gob.ar
Gustavo Adolfo Palma, Tel: +54-0381154681260, Fax: +54-0381154681260, Email: gustavo.palma@reprobiotec.com
Received: 14 May 2021   • Revised: 11 August 2021   • Accepted: 11 September 2021
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of ageing and feeding strategies on the calpain protease system and meat quality traits in Braford steers.
Thirty Braford steers were employed; 15 animals were supplemented with corn silage during finishing and 15 were kept only on pasture. Meat quality traits and calpain system protein activity were evaluated in longissimus thoracis et lumborum (LTL) steaks aged for 2, 7, 14, and 21 days.
Aged meat showed higher pH and calcium content, while Warner Bratzler shear force (WBSF) decreased to day 21. No interaction between ageing and diet was seen for quality traits. Steers finished with corn silage showed higher values of water holding capacity, WBSF and free calcium, and lower values of pH and cooking loss. Calpain and calpastatin activities decreased with ageing. Finishing steers on pasture produced higher values of calpains and lower values of calpastatin activities. The higher values of calpain 1 activity were observed in muscles aged 2 days from pasture finished animals, and the lower activity of the inhibitor in the 21 days aged samples of the same group.


These results suggest a diet by ageing interaction in calpains and calpastatin and this interaction impact in Warner Bratzler Shear Force in Braford LTL muscle.
Keywords: Bovine; Calpain System; Calpastatin; Pasture; Supplementation; Tenderness

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