Main Article Content

Teodora Popova Jivko Nakev


The aim of this study was to describe and compare the fatty acid profile of the backfat layers in four pig breeds – Landrace, Pietrain, Duroc and Large White. Six gilts per breed were used for the analysis. While differences between the examined breeds were limited to the content of C18:1n-9 and the total level of monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA), which were highest in the inner backfat layer of Duroc pigs, the two layers differed substantially. Generally, the inner backfat layer was more saturated when compared to the outer layer. On the other hand, the content of the polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) was higher in the outer layer. The differences in the fatty acid profile between the two backfat layers were most visible in the Landrace pigs. The latter showed significantly higher content of C18:0 (P<0.001), which was also found in Duroc (P<0.05), as well as total saturated fatty acids (SFA) (P<0.01) in the inner layer. Furthermore, higher levels of C18:2n-6 (P<0.05), C18:3n-3 (P<0.01) and the total amount of PUFA (P<0.05) were found in the outer backfat layer in the animals of the Landrace breed.

Article Details


Bee G., Gebert S., Messikommer R. (2002). Effect of dietary energy supply and fat source on the fatty acid pattern of adipose and lean tissues and lipogenesis in the pig. Journal of Animal Science, 2002, 80: 1564–1574.

Bertol T. M., de Campos R.M. L., Ludke J.V., Terra N. N., de Figueiredo E.A.P., Coldebella A., dos Santos Filho J.I., Kawski V.L., Lehr N. M. Effects of genotype and dietary oil supplementation on performance, carcass traits, pork quality and fatty acid composition of backfat and intramuscular fat. Meat Science, 2013, 93: 507-516.

Bligh E. G., Dyer W.Y. A rapid method of total lipid extraction and purification. Canadian Journal of Biochemistry and Physiology, 1959, 37(8): 911-917.

Camara M., Mourot J., Fevrier C. Influence of two dairy fats on lipid synthesis in the pig: comparative study of liver, muscle, and the two backfat layers. Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism, 1996, 40: 287–295.

Christie W. W. (1973). Lipid analysis, 1973, Pergamon Press, Oxford.

Daza A., Ruiz –Carrascal J., Olivares A., Menoyo D., Lopez-Bote, J. Fatty acids profile of the subcutaneous backfat layers from Iberian pigs raised under free-range conditions. Food Science and Technology International, 2007, 13: 135-140.

Gandemer G. Lipids in muscle and adipose tissues, changes during processing and sensory properties of meat products. Meat Science, 2002, 62: 309-321.

Klensporf-Pawlik D., Szyldowski M., Kaszmarek A., Nowacka-Woszuk J., Swintonski M., Jeleń H. The fatty acid composition of the Longissimus dorsi muscle, subcutaneous and visceral fats differ in four commercial breeds. Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences, 2012, 21: 661-676.

Legan E. M., White H. M., Schinckel A. P., Gaines A. M., Latour M. A. Evaluating growth and carcass changes in cull gilts fed distillers dried grains with solubles. The Professional Animal Scientist, 2007, 23: 612-615.

Monziols M., Bonneau M., Davanel A., Kouba M. Comparison of the lipid content and fatty acid composition of intermuscular and subcutaneous adipose tissues in pig carcasses. Meat Science, 2006, 76: 54-60.

Morel P.C.H., McIntosh J.C., Janz J.A.M. Alteration of the fatty acid profile of pork by dietary manipulation. Asian-Australasian Journal of Animal Science, 2006, 19(3): 431-437.

Olivares A., Daza A., Rey A.I., Lopez-Bote C.J. Interactions between genotype, dietary fat saturation and vitamin A concentration on intramuscular fat content and fatty acid composition in pigs. Meat Science, 2009, 82: 6-12.

Popova T. Fatty acid composition of backfat during frozen storage in pigs fed vitamin E supplemented diet. Agricultural Science and Technology, 2014, 6(3): 359-363.

Popova T., Nakev J., Marchev Y. Fatty acid composition of subcutaneous and intramuscular adipose tissue in East Balkan Pigs. Biotechnology in Animal Husbandry, 2015, 31 (4): 543-550.

Popova, T., Nakev J. Quality of meat in purebred pigs involved in crossbreeding schemes II. Fatty acid composition of m. Longissimus thoracis. Bulgarian Journal of Agricultural Science (in press)

Raj St., Skiba G., Weremko D., Fandrejewski H., Migdal W., Borowiec F., Polawska E. The relationship between the chemical composition of the carcass and the fatty acid composition of intramuscular fat and backfat of several pig breeds slaughtered at different weight. Meat Science, 2010, 86: 324-330.

Sauerwein H., Bendixen E., Restelli L., Ceciliani F. The adipose tissue in farm animals: a proteomic approach. Current Protein and Peptide Science, 2014, 15(2): 146-155.

Seman D. L. Pork fat quality: a pocessor’s perspective. Proceedings of the 61st Reciprocal Meat Conference (pp. 1–7), June 22–25, 2008, Gainesville, Florida.

Van Son M., Enger E.G., Grove H., Ros-Freixedes R., Kent M.P., Lien S., Grindflek E. Genome-wide association study confirm major QTL for backfat fatty acid composition on SSC14 in Duroc pigs, BMC Genomics, 2017, 18(1): 369.

Wood J. D., Enser M., Fisher A.V., Nute G.R., Sheard P.R., Richardson R.I., Hughes S.I., Whittington F.M. Fat deposition, fatty acid composition and meat quality: A review. Meat Science, 2008, 78: 343-358.

Wood J.D., Enser M., Whittington F.M., Moncrieff C.B., Kempster A.J. Backfat composition in pigs: differences between fat thickness groups and sexes. Livestock Production Science, 1989, 22: 351-362.

Zhang W., Yang B., Zhang J., Cui L., Ma J., Chen C., Ai H., Xiao S., Ren J., Huang L. Genome-wide association studies for fatty acid metabolic traits in five divergent pig populations. Scientific reports, 2016, 6: 24718.

How to Cite
POPOVA, Teodora; NAKEV, Jivko. Fatty acid profile of the backfat layers in four pig breeds. Food Science and Applied Biotechnology, [S.l.], v. 2, n. 1, p. 24-29, mar. 2019. ISSN 2603-3380. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 25 may 2019. doi: