Genetic analyses of growth, real-time ultrasound, carcass, and pork quality traits in Duroc and Landrace pigs: I. Breed effects.

L. L. Lo, D. G. McLaren, F. K. McKeith, R. L. Fernando, J. Novakofski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Knowledge of breed effects on carcass and pork quality traits is required to develop commercial crossbreeding programs that emphasize product quality. A 2 x 2 diallel mating system involving Landrace and Duroc pigs was used to estimate individual heterosis, direct breed effects and reciprocal cross differences for post-weaning growth, real-time ultrasound, carcass, and pork quality traits. Data from 5,649 pigs and 960 carcasses representing 65 and 49 sires, respectively, were analyzed assuming animal models. Duroc-sired pigs had 2.1 cm shorter carcasses with 7.3 mm less 10th rib backfat (BF), 4.4 cm2 larger longissimus muscle area (LMA), yielded 2.1 kg more estimated fat standardized lean (FSL), gained 16.5 g more estimated lean per day of age (LDOA), and had 1.0% less water (PWAT) and 1.9% more intramuscular fat (IMF) in the longissimus muscle than did Landrace-sired pigs (P less than .01), adjusted to an off-farm live weight of 111 kg. Reciprocal cross differences were detected for BF, LMA, FSL, LDOA and for subjective marbling, firmness, and muscling scores (P less than .01). Durocsired F1 barrows had 6.3 mm less BF and 5.9 cm2 larger LMA, yielded 3.2 kg more FSL, gained 22.3 g more LDOA, and had less marbling in the longissimus muscle and heavier ham muscling than reciprocal cross barrows. Heterosis estimates (P less than .05) were 27.6 g/d (3.2%) for ADG, -5.8 d (-3.6%) for off-test age, 2.7 cm (3.4%) for carcass length, 1.5 kg (7.2%) for FSL, 14.7 g (5.7%) for LDOA, -.07 (-3.6%) for muscle color, -.5% (-13.2%) for IMF, and .3% (.3%) for PWAT. Breed effects were not detected (P greater than .10) for muscle pH, cooking loss, shear value, and water-holding capacity or for eating quality traits. Reciprocal cross differences suggest an advantage in using the Duroc as a terminal sire, but improved carcass composition and higher intramuscular fat did not seem to affect eating quality traits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2373-2386
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of animal science
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Genetics


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