Almost a decade ago, the sudden rise of breast muscle defects in fast-growing commercial broiler breeds challenged the broiler production industry and meat scientists to address the issue of these novel muscle abnormalities. After that, a widespread hypothesis showing a correlation between high muscle yield and incidence of these muscle myopathies received much acceptance from the research community. Increased muscle hypertrophy and unbalanced growth of connective tissues lead to an inadequate blood supply that ultimately causes hypoxia in muscle fibers. Reduced blood vascular density in muscle fibers induces oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction, leading to muscle fibrosis, lipidosis and myodegeneration. Along with physical changes, the myopathic muscles exhibit poor sensory properties, abnormal texture properties and a low nutritional profile. As these myopathies alter meat’s physical appearance, they have a negative impact on customer’s behavior and preference. A better production environment with proper dietary supplementation with balanced breeding strategies can minimize the incidence of muscle myopathies in broiler chicken. This review aims to address the underlying mechanism behind these myopathies and their impact on poultry meat quality, including nutritional value and consumer behavior. It describes the link between genetic and non-genetic elements influencing myopathies, along with the strategies to minimize the occurrence of breast muscle myopathies.

Publication timeframe:
4 times per year
Journal Subjects:
Life Sciences, Biotechnology, Zoology, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine