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Anim Biosci > Accepted Articles
https://doi.org/10.5713/ab.22.0391    [Accepted] Published online February 27, 2023.
Estimation of genetic parameters for pork belly traits
Seung-Hoon Lee1,2  , Sang-Hoon Lee3  , Hee-Bok Park4,*  , Jun Mo Kim1,* 
1Department of Animal Science and Technology, Chung-Ang University, Anseong, Gyeonggi-do 17546, Korea
2Department of Biotechnology, Korea University, Seoul 02841, Korea
3Division of Pediatric General and Thoracic Surgery, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, 45229, USA
4Department of Animal Resources, Kongju National University, Yesan 32439, Korea
Correspondence:  Hee-Bok Park,Email: heebokpark@kongju.ac.kr
Jun Mo Kim, Tel: +82-31-675-3263, Fax: +82-31-675-3108, Email: junmokim@cau.ac.kr
Received: 11 October 2022   • Revised: 5 December 2022   • Accepted: 24 February 2023
Pork belly is a cut of meat with high worldwide demand. However, although the belly is comprised of multiple muscles and fat, unlike the loin muscle, research on their genetic parameters has yet to focus on a representative cut. To use swine breeding, it is necessary to estimate heritability against pork belly traits. Moreover, to identify genetic relationship among the traditional carcass and meat quality traits, estimating genetic correlations is needed. This study sought to estimate the heritability of the carcass, belly, and their component traits, as well as the genetic correlations among them, to confirm whether these traits can be improved.
A total of 543 Yorkshire pigs (406 castrated males and 137 females) from 49 sires and 244 dam were used in this study. To estimate genetic parameters, a total of 12 traits such as lean meat production ability, meat quality and pork belly traits were chosen. The heritabilities were estimated by using GEMMA software. The statistical model was selected that farm, carcass weight, sex and slaughter season as a fixed effect. In addition, its genetic parameters were calculated via MTG2 software.
The heritability estimates for the 7th belly slice along the whole plate and its components were low to moderate (0.07 ± 0.07 to 0.33 ± 0.07). Moreover, the genetic correlations among the carcass and belly traits were moderate to high (0.28 ± 0.20 to 0.99 ± 0.31). Particularly, the rectus abdominis muscle exhibited a high absolute genetic correlation with the belly and meat quality (0.73 ± 52 to 0.93 ± 0.43).
A moderate to high correlation coefficient could be bred based on the genetic parameters. The belly could be genetically improved to contain a larger proportion of muscle regardless of lean meat production ability.
Keywords: Belly Component; Genetic Correlation; Genetic Parameter; Heritability; Pig; Pork Belly

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