Journal article

Differences in light scattering between pale and dark beef longissimus thoracis muscles are primarily caused by differences in the myofilament lattice, myofibril and muscle fibre transverse spacings

J Hughes, F Clarke, Y Li, P Purslow, R Warner



Beef colour is essential to consumer acceptability with dark muscle colours being problematic. Dark meat has less light scattering but the mechanisms are unknown. We hypothesise that three mechanisms are responsible for decreased light scattering in dark meat, namely (i) larger lateral separation of myofilaments, (ii) decreased optical protein density in the I-band and (iii) decreased denaturation of sarcoplasmic proteins. Nineteen beef longissimus thoracis muscles, divided into 'light', 'medium' and 'dark' colour groups, were assessed for light scattering by reflectance confocal microscopy, sarcomere length, and myofilament lattice spacing by small-angle X-ray diffraction. Dark muscles had ..

View full abstract

University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by FONCyT

Funding Acknowledgements

The authors and CSIRO acknowledges funding provided by Australian Meat Processor Corporation (AMPC) and matching funds provided from the Australian Government, via Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA), to support the research and development detailed in this publication. The support of Griffith University, in particular the Imaging and Image Analysis Facility is also gratefully acknowledged. Peter Purslow acknowledges the support of FONCyT (PRH-PICT 2013-3292).This research has been facilitated by access to Australian Proteome Analysis Facility which is funded by an initiative of the Australian Government as part of the National Collaborative Research Infrastructure Strategy. We wish to acknowledge the support from Michelle Colgrave in generating the output from the search of the MS/MS data against the UniProt database.