An exceptional muscle development commonly referred to as “double muscled” in Piedmontese breed of cattle has attracted considerable attention from beef producers. The Piedmontese cattle breed is known to express a “double muscle” phenomenon and are renowned for their extremely lean, tender meat. It was discovered that the double muscling developed due to the naturally occurring mutations in what is referred to as the myostatin coding sequence. It is this gene, referred to as myostatin that occurs naturally in all mammals and restricts muscle growth. However, in the case of Piedmontese cattle, the gene is naturally mutated, resulting in the unrestricted muscle development known as double-muscling. Double muscling in cattle has long been a trait of interest to processors as consumers increasingly have favored lean and tender beef. Research at the US Meat and Animal Research Center (MARC) shows that muscle development in Piedmontese cattle averages 14 percent higher than in most other breeds. The myostatin gene also helps to provide the consistent tenderness of Piedmontese beef.
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