Pig adaptation to cold environment enhances oxidative and glycolytic Longissimus muscle metabolism

Abstract : Environmental temperature influences energy intake utilization and tissue deposition in pig. However, physiological mechanisms involved in muscle metabolic adaptation to cold temperature are unclear. This study aimed at evaluating the effects of a cold temperature applied during the post-weaning (PW) and growing-finishing (GF) periods of pigs on growth performance, body composition and Longissimus muscle (LM) energy metabolism, with emphasis on the AMP-protein kinase (AMPK) pathway involved in homeostasis regulation. A total of 84 Large White x (Large White x Landrace) piglets (castrated males and females) fed ad libitum were submitted to either Cold (C: from 23°C to 15°C) or Thermoneutrality (T: from 28°C to 23°C) temperature during PW. 12 C and 12 T piglets were slaughtered at 25 kg and the remaining piglets were reared at 12°C (CC) or 23°C (TT), up to 115 kg. During PW, cold exposure induced strong responses on growth performance. Despite a higher average feed intake (AFI, + 50 g/d, P<0.01), C piglets exhibited a lower daily gain (ADG) and carcass adiposity (P<0.01) compared to T piglets. During GF period, CC pigs still exhibited a higher AFI (+ 394 g/d, P<0.001) than TT pigs but ADG and carcass adiposity did not differ between CC and TT pigs. Whereas a cold PW exposure reduced glycogen content (P=0.01), a long term GF adaptation stimulated oxidative and glycolytic muscle metabolism by increasing glycogen and lipid contents (P<0.001), and lactate dehydrogenase, citrate synthase and ?-hydroxy-acyl-CoA dehydrogenase activities (P<0.001). Evaluated by an increase in total AMPK level without change in AMPK phosphorylation level in CC pigs, homeostasis potential was preserved in a cold environment. LM adaptations to cold temperature impaired technological meat quality (higher drip loss and lower ultimate pH), but higher lipid content could positively modulate sensory quality.
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Conference papers
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Justine Faure, B. Lebret, N. Bonhomme, P. Ecolan, M. Kouba, et al.. Pig adaptation to cold environment enhances oxidative and glycolytic Longissimus muscle metabolism. 63. Annual Meeting of the European Association for Animal Production, Aug 2012, Bratislava (SK), Slovakia. pp.370-370, ⟨10.3920/978-90-8686-761-5⟩. ⟨hal-00841101⟩

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