The relative distribution of types I and III collagens and collagen fibre architecture in the perimysium and endomysium were compared to the longissimus thoracis (LT) and pectoralis profundus (PP) muscles in pigs. The LT muscle was composed of type I myofibres 16.8%, IIA 12.9% and IIB 70.2%, and the PP muscle was 25.4, 23.1 and 51.5%, respectively. The total collagen amount differed significantly between the LT (2.66 mg/g) and PP (4.13 mg/g) muscle (P<0.001). On image analysis of the immunohistochemical preparations for types I and III collagens, the percentage area of the perimysium to the total collagen area showed significant differences between the muscles, where perimysial type I collagen occupied 25.4% of the total area in the LT muscle and 45.7% in the PP and perimysial type III 37.6 and 54.5%, respectively (P < 0.001). In scanning electron microscopic photographs of the macerated preparation, very thick collagen layers composed of several fibre bands were observed in the perimysia of the PP muscle and appeared differently from the thinner perimysia with a few bands in the LT. Similar architecture of endomysial collagen fibres were observed around every myofibre type in the PP muscle and also in the LT. The fine surface cover of reticular collagen fibres around an adipocyte was shown as a global cast. These results suggested that the total collagen amount of the PP muscle was related mainly to the well developed perimysia composed of several collagen bands, indicating tougher meat compared with the LT muscle.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Food Science