Cross Sectional View

A 750 pound carcass was separated into right and left sides and was chilled to approximately 350 F. The lower portions of the pelvic and thoracic limbs were removed at the tibiotarsal and radiocarpal joints. The right side was cut into each sub-primal (chuck, brisket/foreshank, plate, rib, loin, flank, and round). Then each sub-primal was cut into cross sections of 1 inch thickness to show the progression of muscles and their relationship to the skeleton and to fat deposits. The cross sections were allowed to bloom and pictures were taken with the cross section being illuminated with strobe flashes. The posterior view of each cross section is shown. The diagrams that accompany each of the photographs serve to help identify the items in the photographs more easily. In the diagrams, individual muscles are shown in a red color, bones are shown in a light pink color, and cartilage is shown colored in solid black. The creamy brown areas represent fat. Each diagram's position is identified anatomically by terms appearing within the illustration.

Lateral Views

Another 750 pound carcass was divided into the forequarter and hindquarter. The hindquarter was dissected by removing fat to expose underlying muscle. The left side of the 750 pound carcass was also divided into a forequarter and hindquarter. The forequarter was dissected similarly as the hindquarter. After each individual muscle was removed the carcass was photographed. Each muscle that was removed was identified and highlighted in red on a diagram to help make identification of the muscles easier. The muscles removed from each layer are also listed below the diagram.


The sub-primal cuts were identified from a 750 pound carcass. The Institutional Meat Purchase Specifications were used as a reference in making these cuts. Each sub-primal was photographed on a rotational table to allow a 360 degree view of the specified cut. These rotations involved 16 pictures, each rotating 22.5 degrees, during which the sub-primal was illuminated with strobe flashes.


When citing this for a journal article, please use the following citation: Jones, S.J., Guru, A., Singh, V., Carpenter, B., Calkins, C.R., and Johnson, D. 2004. Bovine Myology and Muscle Profiling. Available: http://bovine.unl.edu


University of Nebraska–Lincoln
Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources
Animal Science Department

Dr. Steven Jones
Dr. Chris Calkins
Bryan Carpenter
Renee Minary
Ryan Brewster
Kathryn Whiting
Jennifer Sherrill

University of Florida
Animal Science Department
Gainesville, FL

Dr. Dwain Johnson

University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Distributed Environments for Active Learning

Dr. Ashu Guru
Vishal Singh
Djuka Selendic
Nino Kapetanovic

Bucky Gwartney, Ph.D.
International Marketing Specialist
U.S. Department of Agriculture, AMS
1400 Independence Ave., SW, Rm. 2606-S
Washington DC 20250
202-720-1424 (o)
202-720-1112 (f)

This project was funded by The Beef Checkoff

National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, a contractor to The Beef Checkoff
Bridget Wasser
Executive Director, Meat Science & Technology
Direct: (303)850-3336
E-mail: bwasser@beef.org

Cattlemen’s Beef Board
9000 East Nichols Ave, Suite 215
Centennial, CO 80112
Office: (303)220-9890
Fax: (303)220-9280
Email: beefboard@beef.org

Muscling Profiling Data was funded by the The Beef Checkoff and the research was performed by Dr. Chris Calkins at the University of Nebraska and Dr. Dwain Johnson at the University of Florida.


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Research in Motion- Muscle Profiling. University of Nebraska-Lincoln and University of Florida. National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. Denver, CO 2000.

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