Medycyna Wet. 66 (7), 495-498, 2010
Szkucik K., Ziomek M.
Variation in the fatty acid profile as related to the type of fat and the rabbit breed
The aim of the research was to determine the variation in the fatty acid profile of rabbit fat as related to the fat location in the carcass and the breed of the animal. Research material consisted of samples of subcutaneous fat from the scapular area, perirenal fat and intramuscular fat from thigh and scapular muscles collected from carcasses of 30 meat breed rabbits and 30 crossbreeds. Both groups of rabbits (females) were bred in small farms during summer and fed mainly with green fodder and root crops supplemented with ground barley and a small quantity of hay. Fatty acid composition was determined with a Varian CP 3800 gas chromatograph. The comparison of fatty acid profiles of the intramuscular, perirenal and subcutaneous fat of the meat breed rabbits revealed that intramuscular fat was characterized by higher contents of stearic acid (C18:0) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) with the exception of linoleic acid (C18:3). Perirenal fat was characterized by higher contents of tetradecanoic acid (C14:1) and linoleic acid (C18:2), whereas the content of palmitoleic acid (C16:1) was the highest in subcutaneous fat. Intramuscular fat of crossbreeds was characterized by the highest content of palmitic acid (C16:0), whereas the quantity of linoleic acid (C18:2) was significantly higher in perirenal fat. Despite differences in the content of the above-mentioned fatty acids, total amounts of saturated fatty acids (SFA), monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA) and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) in all types of fat examined and in both groups of rabbits were comparable Generally, lipids of crossbreeds were characterised by a lower percentage of SFA and a higher percentage of PUFA, including mainly linoleic acid (C18:3), in comparison with the meat breed. These lipids also demonstrated better SFA/UFA and PUFA/MUFA ratios. Moreover, the fat of crossbreeds was characterized by a highly favourable n-6/n-3 fatty acid ratio. The research findings suggest that rabbit fat, especially the fat of crossbreeds, is a rich source of polyunsaturated fatty acids, including NNKT, and their mutual proportions are close to dietary recommendations.
Key words: rabbits, fatty acids, location of fat, breed