[en] Age Factors ; Animals ; Body Composition ; Body Weight ; Breeding ; Cattle/blood/growth & development/metabolism ; Creatinine/blood ; Diet ; Growth Hormone/blood ; Hormones/blood ; Insulin/blood ; Insulin-Like Growth Factor I/analysis ; Male ; Testosterone/blood ; Thyroid Hormones/blood
[en] Six Belgian Blue bulls (double-muscled type) and six Friesian bulls were offered a fattening diet for 34 weeks. Plasma samples were obtained once a week and also every 20 min over a 24 h period, 7 weeks before slaughter. No differences were observed between the breeds in plasma glucose, urea and free amino nitrogen concentrations, while creatinine was significantly higher in the Belgian Blue bulls. Tri-iodothyronin, tetra-iodothyronin, insulin-like growth factor 1, insulin and testosterone concentrations were higher in the Holstein group. In contrast, the Belgian Blue bulls appeared to produce more growth hormone. The slaughter weight, carcass weight, dressing percentage and proportion of lean meat were significantly higher in the Belgian Blue group. The characteristics of muscle mass (carcass weight, dressing percentage and proportion of lean meat) were positively correlated with creatinine and with the total peak area or peak amplitude of growth hormone. The insulin concentration was positively correlated with the proportion of adipose tissue in the carcass and negatively correlated with the proportion of muscle. There were no correlations between the carcass characteristics and insulin-like growth factor 1 or testosterone. No further information was provided when the ratios of the hormones were correlated with carcass characteristics.