Proteome basis of pale, soft, and exudative-like (PSE-like) broiler breast (Pectoralis major) meat

Monil A. Desai, Viodelda Jackson, Wei Zhai, Surendranath P. Suman, Mahesh N. Nair, Carol M. Beach, M. Wes Schilling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Pale, Soft, and Exudative (PSE) broiler breast meat has poor protein functionality, which leads to quality problems and economic loss in the poultry industry. Proteomics has been applied to characterize the biochemical mechanisms governing tenderness, color, and water-holding capacity in meat. However, the proteome basis of PSE has not yet been characterized for broiler breast meat. Therefore, this study was conducted to determine the differences in meat quality (cooking loss and shear force), descriptive sensory characteristics, consumer acceptance, and whole muscle proteome between normal and PSE-like broiler breast meat. Male Hubbard × Cobb 500 birds (n = 1,050) were raised in commercial houses. Prior to harvest, a sample of the broilers (n = 900) were subjected to short-term stress (38°C for 2 h), and the remaining broilers (n = 150) were maintained at control conditions (21°C for 2 h). Broiler breast (Pectoralis major) meat was collected and characterized by pH24 and L∗24 as normal (pH24 5.8 to 6.2, L∗24 45 to 55) or PSE-like (pH24 5.4 to 5.7, L∗24 55 to 65) samples. Normal broiler breast meat had lower shear force values than PSE-like meat (P < 0.05). Based on sensory descriptive analysis, normal cooked chicken breast meat was more tender and juicier than PSE-like breast meat (P < 0.05). Consumer sensory analysis results indicated that 81% of consumer panelists liked normal breast meat whereas 62% of the panelists liked PSE-like breast meat. Whole muscle proteome profiling identified fifteen differentially abundant proteins in normal and PSE-like broiler breast samples. Actin alpha, myosin heavy chain, phosphoglycerate kinase, creatine kinase M type, beta-enolase, carbonic anhydrase 2, proteasome subunit alpha, pyruvate kinase, and malate dehydrogenase were over-abundant (P < 0.05) in PSE-like broiler breast whereas phosphoglycerate mutase-1, alpha-enolase, ATP-dependent 6-phosphofructokinase, and fructose 1,6-bisphosphatase were over-abundant (P < 0.05) in normal meat. Thus, results indicated that differences in proteome abundance could be related to the meat quality differences between normal and PSE-like broiler breast meat.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2696-2706
Number of pages11
JournalPoultry Science
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Poultry Science Association Inc.


  • PSE-like
  • broiler
  • color
  • pH
  • pale soft exudative
  • whole muscle proteome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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