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Measurements were made in a nucleus herd of Charolais cows on pasture in early summer 1998. The average age and body weight of the cows were 6.8 years and 600 kg, respectively. Simultaneously to weighing, the following body parameters were measured with traditional measuring equipment (measuring rod and tape measure): height at withers (132.2±3.93 cm), rump width II (distance between the femoral necks) (52.1±2.74 cm), slanting body length (177.2±8.09 cm) and chest girth (194.5±8.50 cm). The average values in the group of pure-bred cows (n=17) were as follows: height at withers (137.2 cm), rump width II (55.6 cm), slanting body length (185.3 cm), chest girth (203.2 cm). In the group of cross-bred cows with a 50–69% Charolais gene ratio, the body size of the cows was poorer for each characteristic, as compared to the data of pure-bred individuals (height at withers: –5.3 cm, rump width II: –3.5 cm, slanting body length: –6.8 cm, chest girth: –7.3 cm). Two clusters were determined in the group of pure-breds: one was made up of young, moderately wide, small cows with low body weight and short body (1), and the other of young, but markedly wide, tall cows with high body weight and long body (2). The average values of the individuals in cluster 2 were significantly (P<0.05) higher than those of animals in cluster 1, except for age.Cows with a 90–99% Charolais gene ratio were ranked into 4 clusters as follows: cluster 1: old cows with average body weight and size; cluster 2: average aged cows with low body weight, average height and short body; cluster 3: old cows with high body weight and long, wide body; cluster 4: young cows with low body weight and below-average body parameters. Comparing cows in clusters 2 and 4, cluster 2 was found to be superior for each body measurement and this difference was statistically significant (P<0.05). Obviously, the average of the measurements in cluster 4 was significantly smaller than the data of cluster 3. Cows with an 80–89% Charolais gene ratio were also grouped in 4 clusters. These data suggest that applying cluster analysis to cow groups with similar gene ratios is a suitable method for ranking individuals of a certain population and as such for observing the variance within varieties.

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The meat of 21 Hungarian Simmental and 17 Holstein-Friesian cattles was analysed for fatty acid and amino acid content, and also for the biological value of the meat protein. It can be established that the proportion of the saturated and the mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids compared to each other is not significantly influenced by the breed and the live weight at the various types and weight categories. The increase in the live weight goes together with the increase in the ratio of the monounsaturated fatty acids in the meat in case of both breeds. The amino acid content of the meat was not significantly influenced by the breed, even the live weight didn't demonstrate any effects. The essential amino acid content and the biological value of the meet of the Hungarian Simmental are practically the same as those of the Holstein-Friesian.

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Acta Veterinaria Hungarica
Authors: S. Fekete, I. Szakáll, Emma Kósa, Emese Andrásofszky, Kinga Fodor, A. Hidas, and J. Tőzsér

A growth trial was carried out to test the effect of organic, trivalent chromium and L-carnitine on the body composition of growing rats. At the same time, an evaluation of different measurement methods (weight of epididymal fat pad, adipocyte morphometry, total body electrical conductivity) was performed. Outbred Wistar rats of 30 days of age were fed diets of different (0, 10 and 20%) protein level. The diets were supplemented with 4 mg/kg Cr as chromium nicotinate, and 100 mg/kg L-carnitine. The experimental feeding lasted 15 days, after a 5-day-long adjustment period. It was found that Cr addition increased feed intake. Both treatments caused changes in body composition, increasing fat and protein deposition. Organic chromium had no effect at either protein level, while L-carnitine improved the protein retention only at an optimum (20%) protein supply. No statistically significant correlation was found between total body electrical conductivity (TOBEC) and body composition, which could be attributed to the great individual differences. A close correlation was found among total body fat percentage, weight of epididymal fat pad and the adipocyte surface. The data suggest that there is an interaction between dietary protein supply and the effect of repartitioning agents.

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