Effects of dietary copper source and concentration on carcass characteristics and lipid and cholesterol metabolism in growing and finishing steers
Engle, T.E.; Spears, J.W.; Armstrong, T.A.; Wright, C.L.; Odle, J.
Journal of Animal Science 78(4): 1053-1059
ISSN/ISBN: 0021-8812 PMID: 10784198 DOI: 10.2527/2000.7841053x
We conducted an experiment to determine the effects of dietary copper (Cu) source and level on carcass characteristics, longissimus muscle fatty acid composition, and serum and muscle cholesterol concentrations in steers. Sixty Angus and Angus x Hereford steers were stratified by weight and initial liver Cu concentration within a breed and randomly assigned to treatments. Treatments consisted of: 1) control (no supplemental Cu); 2) 20 mg Cu/kg DM from Cu sulfate (CuSO4); 3) 40 mg Cu/kg DM from CuSO4; 4) 20 mg Cu/kg DM from Cu citrate; 5) 20 mg Cu/kg DM from Cu proteinate; and 6) 20 mg Cu/kg DM from tribasic Cu chloride. A corn silage-soybean meal-based diet was fed for 56 d. Steers were then switched to a high-concentrate diet. Equal numbers (n = 5) of steers per treatment were slaughtered after receiving the finishing diets for either 101 or 121 d. Serum cholesterol was not affected by treatment during the growing phase but was decreased (P < .05) in steers supplemented with Cu by d 84 of the finishing period and remained lower (P < . 05) at subsequent sampling periods. Longissimus muscle cholesterol concentration tended to be reduced (P < .11) by Cu supplementation. Hot carcass weight and backfat were lower (P < .05) in animals receiving supplemental Cu. However, Cu-supplemented and control steers had similar marbling scores. Longissimus muscle polyunsaturated fatty acid concentrations (18:2 and 18:3) were increased (P < .07) and saturated fatty acid concentrations tended (P < . 11) to be reduced by Cu supplementation. These results indicate that as little as 20 mg of supplemental Cu/kg diet can reduce backfat and serum cholesterol and increase muscle polyunsaturated fatty acids in steers fed high-concentrate diets.