Bovine longissimus muscle was prerigor pressure treated at 103.5 MNm- 2 at 37 °C for 2 min and immediately sampled, fixed and examined by light microscopy, scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Parameters like pH, Warner-Bratzler shear force values and sarcomere length were measured and related to the microscopic observations. Pressure treated samples have shorter sarcomere length, lower pH and W-B values. Physical changes include separation of sarcolemmal and endomysial sheath, contraction bands, disruption of myofibrillar structure and increased interfibrillar and intermyofibrillar spaces. At the subcellular levels, disappearance of glycogen granules, appearance of swollen mitochondria, sarcoplasmic reticulum and in some cases ruptured mitochondria were observed . These morphological changes in mitochondria and sarcoplasmic reticulum should furnish the additional Ca 2+ to account for the pressure induced contraction. The interactions between the chemical and physical effects should account for the tenderizing effect of pressure treatment.
Elgasim, E. A. and Kennick, W. H.
"Effect of High Hydrostatic Pressure on Meat Microstructure,"
Food Structure: Vol. 1
, Article 8.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/foodmicrostructure/vol1/iss1/8