We performed a whole-genome scan with 110 informative microsatellites in a commercial Duroc population for which growth, fatness, carcass and meat quality phenotypes were available. Importantly, meat quality traits were recorded in two different muscles, that is, gluteus medius (GM) and longissimus thoracis et lumborum (LTL), to find out whether these traits are determined by muscle-specific genetic factors. At the whole-population level, three genome-wide QTL were identified for carcass weight (SSC7, 60 cM), meat redness (SSC13, 84 cM) and yellowness (SSC15, 108 cM). Within-family analyses allowed us to detect genome-wide significant QTL for muscle loin depth between the 3rd and 4th ribs (SSC15, 54 cM), backfat thickness (BFT) in vivo (SSC10, 58 cM), ham weight (SSC9, 69 cM), carcass weight (SSC7, 60 cM; SSC9, 68 cM), BFT on the last rib (SSC11, 48 cM) and GM redness (SSC8, 85 cM; SSC13, 84 cM). Interestingly, there was low positional concordance between meat quality QTL maps obtained for GM and LTL. As a matter of fact, the three genome-wide significant QTL for colour traits (SSC8, SSC13 and SSC15) that we detected in our study were all GM specific. This result suggests that QTL effects might be modulated to a certain extent by genetic and environmental factors linked to muscle function and anatomical location.
© 2012 The Authors, Animal Genetics © 2012 Stichting International Foundation for Animal Genetics.