PSVII-33 - Inter-Animal Variability in Androstenone Transport and the Potential Effect on the Development of Boar Taint
Wednesday, July 22, 2020
7:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Location: Poster Sessions
Boar taint is a meat quality issue characterized by an off-odour or off-flavour in pork caused by the accumulation of androstenone in the fat. Our previous work demonstrated that androstenone binds non-specifically to albumin in the plasma and suggested that the binding affinity of androstenone might vary between individual animals, which may affect the subsequent development of boar taint. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to characterize the binding of androstenone in the plasma of animals with high and low fat androstenone concentrations to determine the effect of androstenone binding affinity on the development of boar taint. Plasma and backfat samples were obtained from 5-month-old terminal cross [Duroc x (Landrace x Yorkshire)] (n = 8) boars. An androstenone specific enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was used to determine animals with high (n = 4) or low (n = 4) fat androstenone concentrations. The plasma from each boar was incubated with radiolabeled [3H]-androstenone in the presence or absence of excess unlabeled androstenone. Excess unlabeled androstenone created competition for binding sites allowing the displacement of [3H]-androstenone from albumin to be quantified. Incubations were analyzed by a novel high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method we previously developed to assess androstenone binding. Statistical analysis was conducted using a two-way ANOVA. The plasma albumin concentrations were similar across individual boars; however, the percentage of androstenone that could be displaced from albumin in boars with high fat androstenone concentrations ranged from 7.1 ± 2.4% to 21.9 ± 5.2%, and was significantly lower (P = 0.01) than the percentage of androstenone displaced in the animals with low fat androstenone concentrations. These results suggest that the binding affinity of androstenone is inversely related with fat androstenone concentrations, demonstrating for the first time that the transport of androstenone in the plasma may contribute to the development of boar taint.