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Journal of Animal Science Abstract - Animal Genetics

Genetic parameters of product quality and hepatic metabolism in fattened mule ducks1


This article in JAS

  1. Vol. 89 No. 3, p. 669-679
    Received: Apr 16, 2010
    Accepted: Oct 26, 2010
    Published: December 4, 2014

    2 Corresponding author(s):

  1. C. Marie-Etancelin 2,
  2. B. Basso*,
  3. S. Davail,
  4. K. Gontier,
  5. X. Fernandez,
  6. Z. G. Vitezica,
  7. D. Bastianelli§,
  8. E. Baéza#,
  9. M.-D. Bernadet,
  10. G. Guy,
  11. J.-M. Brun* and
  12. A. Legarra*
  1. Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, SAGA Station d’Amélioration Génétique des Animaux, UR631, 31 326 Castanet Tolosan, France;
    Université de Pau et des Pays de l’Adour, IPREM-EMM Institut Pluridisciplinaire de Recherche sur l’Environnement et les Matériaux, Equipe Environnement et Microbiologie, UMR5254, 40 004 Mont de Marsan Cedex, France;
    Université de Toulouse, Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse, Ecole Nationale Vétérinaire de Toulouse, Ecole Nationale Supérieure Agronomique de Toulouse, Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, TANDEM Tissu Animaux, Nutrition, Digestion, Ecosystème et Métabolisme, UMR1289, 31 326 Castanet Tolosan, France;
    Centre de Coopération Internationale en Recherche Agronomique pour le Développement, UMR SELMET Systèmes d'élevage, UR18, 34 398 Montpellier Cedex 5, France;
    Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, URA Unité de Recherche Avicole, UR83, 37 380 Nouzilly, France; and
    Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique, UEPFG Unité Expérimentale des Palmipèdes à Foie Gras, UE89, 40 280 Benquet, France



Genetic parameters of traits related to hepatic lipid metabolism, carcass composition, and product quality of overfed mule ducks were estimated on both parental lines of this hybrid: the common duck line for the maternal side and the Muscovy line for the paternal side. The originality of the statistical model was to include simultaneously the additive genetic effect of the common ducks and that of the Muscovy ducks, revealing a greater genetic determinism in common than in Muscovy. Plasma metabolic indicators (glucose, triglyceride, and cholesterol contents) were heritable, in particular at the end of the overfeeding period, and heritabilities increased with the overfeeding stage. Carcass composition traits were highly heritable in the common line, with values ranging from 0.15 for liver weight, 0.21 for carcass weight, and 0.25 for abdominal fat weight to 0.32 for breast muscle weight. Heritabilities of technological outputs were greater for the fatty liver (0.19 and 0.08, respectively, on common and Muscovy sides for liver melting rate) than for the pectoralis major muscle (between 0.02 and 0.05 on both parental sides for cooking losses). Fortunately, the processing industry is mainly facing problems in liver quality, such as too high of a melting rate, than in meat quality. The meat quality appraisal criteria (such as texture and cooking losses), usually dependent on pH and the rate of decline of pH, were also very lowly heritable. This study demonstrated that genetic determinism of meat quality and ability of overfeeding is not similar in the common population and in the Muscovy population; traits related to fattening, muscle development, and BW have heritability values from 2 to 4 times greater on the common line than on the Muscovy line, which is relevant for considering different selection strategies.

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