• meat aging;
  • bovine;
  • cathepsin;
  • chilling rate;
  • electrical stimulation


Means of enhancing the rate of aging of bovine meat were investigated to provide some understanding of the tenderization process. Vitamin A was administered to finishing steers, carcasses were electrically stimulated, and longissimus dorsi muscle samples chilled at 2 different rates. Liver cathepsin D, beta-glucuronidase and hexosaminidase were increased (P < 0.05) with vitamin A supplementation but muscle enzymes were not affected. Chilling rate, electrical stimulation and time significantly (P < 0.05) affected cathepsin D distribution patterns, meat color, Warner-Bratzler, myofibrillar fragmentation index and collagen data. Troponin-T degradation was enhanced by aging. Thus, vitamin A can modify liver catheptic enzyme activity but does not affect muscle enzymes at these levels.