Animal Products

Effect of Irradiation on the Degradation of Nucleotides in Turkey Meat

  • Xi Feng (Iowa State University)
  • Sun Hee Moon (Iowa State University)
  • Hyun Yong Lee (Iowa State University)
  • Dong Uk U. Ahn (Iowa State University)


The degradation of nucleotides in cured ready-to-eat (RTE) as well as uncured raw and cooked turkey meat products by irradiation were determined to evaluate the potential impact of nucleotides on the taste changes in irradiated turkey meat. Four irradiation doses (0, 1.5, 3.0 and 4.5 kGy) were applied to cured RTE and uncured turkey meat products, and the amounts of nucleotides and their degradation products were measured. Results showed that irradiation had a significant impact to the amount of nucleotides (adenosine diphosphate, adenosine monophosphate and inosine monophosphate) and the breakdown of these nucleotides (inosine and hypoxanthine) in uncured turkey meat when irradiated at < 3.0 kGy. However, significant decreases in inosine and hypoxanthine were observed when the uncured turkey meat were irradiated at > 3.0 kGy might attribute to uric acid and other compounds formation. The increase in K-value (the percentage of inosine and hypoxanthine over the total content of adenosine triphosphate) at lower irradiation dose in uncured cooked than raw turkey meat indicated that cooked meat is more susceptible to oxidation. But little effect was found on the nucleotides and nucleotides degradation products in cured RTE turkey meat products because of the antioxidant effect of sodium nitrite.

How to Cite:

Feng, X., Moon, S., Lee, H. & Ahn, D. U., (2017) “Effect of Irradiation on the Degradation of Nucleotides in Turkey Meat”, Iowa State University Animal Industry Report 14(1). doi:

Download pdf




Published on
01 Jan 2017
Peer Reviewed