Growth is frequently described as weight gain over time. Researchers have used this information in equations to predict carcass composition and estimate fat deposition. Diet, species, breed, and gender all influence fat deposition. Alterations in diets result in changes in fat deposition as well as the fatty acid profile of meat. Additionally, the amount and composition of the fat can affect lipid stability and flavor development upon cooking. Fat functions not only as a storage of energy and contributor of flavor compounds, but also participates in signaling that affects many aspects of the physiological functions of the animal. Transcription factors that are upregulated in response to excess energy to be stored are an important avenue of research to improve the understanding of fat deposition and thus, the efficiency of production. Additionally, further study of the inflammation associated with increased fat depots may lead to a better understanding of finishing animals, production efficiency, and overall health.
Keywords: breed; carcass yield; fat deposition; fat transcripts; inflammation.