Non-invasive methods for the determination of body and carcass composition in livestock: dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging and ultrasound: invited review

Animal : an International Journal of Animal Bioscience
A M ScholzA D Mitchell


The ability to accurately measure body or carcass composition is important for performance testing, grading and finally selection or payment of meat-producing animals. Advances especially in non-invasive techniques are mainly based on the development of electronic and computer-driven methods in order to provide objective phenotypic data. The preference for a specific technique depends on the target animal species or carcass, combined with technical and practical aspects such as accuracy, reliability, cost, portability, speed, ease of use, safety and for in vivo measurements the need for fixation or sedation. The techniques rely on specific device-driven signals, which interact with tissues in the body or carcass at the atomic or molecular level, resulting in secondary or attenuated signals detected by the instruments and analyzed quantitatively. The electromagnetic signal produced by the instrument may originate from mechanical energy such as sound waves (ultrasound - US), 'photon' radiation (X-ray-computed tomography - CT, dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry - DXA) or radio frequency waves (magnetic resonance imaging - MRI). The signals detected by the corresponding instruments are processed to measure, for example, tissue depths...Continue Reading


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Methods Mentioned

nuclear magnetic resonance
imaging techniques

Software Mentioned

ATAR ( Animal Tomogram Analysis Routines )

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