Beta Agonist Research Paper

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The use of beta-adrenergic agonists in the North American beef industry: is there a future? Hal Nixdorff, Department of Agriculture, Food, and Nutritional Science, University of Alberta, 410 Agriculture/forestry Centre, Edmonton, Alberta T6G2P5 Canada Abstract Commercially available beta-adrenergic agonists, commonly called beta-agonists, for use in the beef industry have both benefits and negatives. Beta-agonists are fed to cattle in their last month on feed, before slaughter. It is used to improve rate of gain, feed efficiency and carcass leanness. There are two main brands of beta-agonists; OptaflexxTM, with the active ingredient ractopamine hydrochloride, and ZilmaxTM with the active ingredient zilpaterol hydrochloride.…show more content…
The great need for food brings forth the importance of the agriculture industry. Science has made many products that allow for food production to be done in a more efficient, cheaper, and faster manner. In the beef industry many types of growth stimulators have been created to increase weight per day of age, shorten finishing time and maximize profit for the producer. More recently, developed products with the common name, beta-agonist, have been developed. Beta-agonists have distinct advantages and disadvantages in terms of animal welfare, meat quality, and profitability when used in production. Many growth promoters such as implants have been available in the cattle industry for over 35 years; with such a long period of use there is very little which is unknown about these products. Unlike other growth promoters, beta-agonists have only been commercially available since 2004 (Radunz, 2011). Beta agonists have been used heavily in the feedlot industry as well as in the show cattle industry. New studies have leaned away from the use of this feed additive, which has the potential to drastically change both industries. Beta-agonists deemed safe for human consumption by the food inspection governing bodies should be used in the production of livestock as the advantages of these additives outweigh any disadvantages. The aim of this review is to present evidence that beta…show more content…
According to Mersmann (1993) on the surface of almost every cell in the mammalian body lay beta-adrenergic receptors. To stimulate these receptors, neurotransmitters physiologically release norepinephrine and epinephrine, attaching themselves to the beta-adrenergic receptors. There are three subtypes of beta-adrenergic, beta1-adrenergic, beta2-adrenergic, and beta3-adrenergic. Combining these three subtypes in different mixtures can change the physiological response of an individual cell. Species-specific amino acids can also trigger revision of the function of a given beta-adrenergic subtype. With the understanding of the beta-adrenergic receptor structure, along with the beta-adrenergic subtypes, orally administrated beta adrenergic-agonists have been created to mimic the release of norepinephrine and epinephrine in the fight or flight response (Buchanan-Smith, 2013). Beta-agonists will promote muscle growth while decreasing fat deposits in cattle, pigs, poultry, and sheep. These changes to carcass composition are very complex, while the main effect is the attachment to the beta-adrenergic receptors. There are other possibilities of changes, such as the release of other hormones, change in the nervous system’s control of feed intake, and modifications in blood flow. As seen there are

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