Marie-France Palin, Ph.D.

Current research and/or projects

I am studying interactions between genes and nutrients (e.g. polyunsaturated fatty acids, amino acids) in growing pigs with the aim of developing new nutrigenomic tools to improve carcass and meat quality and the mammary gland development.

I am also working on genomics and nutritional strategies to increase pork carnosine content. Carnosine is a naturally occurring dipeptide with recognized health attributes. Increasing muscle carnosine content in pigs would be associated with better meat quality and improved meat attributes.

Research and/or project statements

 Active research projects:

  • Enhancement of carnosine content and its nutritional advantages in pork.

  • New technologies to identify pigs with higher muscle carnosine, a new value-added attribute, and advantages of carnosine-enhanced pork in improving meat quality traits and nutritional value of the meat. 

  • Role of prolactin in the regulation of mammary development in late-gestating sows.

  • New feeding and management strategies for replacement gilts that will maximize future milk yield.

Professional activities / interests

  • Animal genomics and nutrigenomics.
  • Identification of marker genes associated with meat quality and mammary development.
  • Role of adipokines in mammary development and function.
  • In vitro cell and tissue culture models (adipose and muscle cells, liver tissue) to characterize different cellular mechanisms (e.g. lipogenesis, oxidative stress, cell growth and differentiation).

Education and awards


  • Ph.D. in Biochemistry, Sherbrooke University

  • B.Sc. in Microbiology, Sherbrooke University

  • Received the Young Scientist Award from the Canadian Society of Animal Science.

Key publications

  1. Oral presentation- no abstract

    2021 - View publication details

  2. Palin, M.F., Lapointe, J., Gariépy, C., Beaudry, D., Kalbe, C. (2020). Characterisation of intracellular molecular mechanisms modulated by carnosine in porcine myoblasts under basal and oxidative stress conditions. PLoS ONE, [online] 15(9 September),

    2020 - View publication details

  3. Caron, A., Palin, M.F., Hovey, R.C., Cohen, J., Laforest, J.P., Farmer, C. (2020). Effects of sustained hyperprolactinemia in late gestation on mammary development of gilts. Domestic Animal Endocrinology, [online] 72

    2020 - View publication details

  4. Palin, M.F., Gariépy, C., Beaudry, D., Lapointe, J. and Kalbe, C. (2019) Protective effects of carnosine on hydrogen peroxide–induced oxidative stress in myoblast cells derived from porcine skeletal muscle. 65th International Congress of Meat Science and Technology 2019 in Potsdam/Berlin, Germany 04– 09 August 2019. (Abstract and Poster)

    2019 - View publication details

  5. Duarte, C.R.A., Farmer, C., Palin, M.F. (2019). Body condition of late pregnant gilts affects the expression of selected adipokines and their receptors in mammary fat and backfat tissues. Journal of Animal Science, [online] 97(1), 220-230.

    2019 - View publication details

  6. Palin, M.F., Gariépy, C., Beaudry, D., Lapointe, J. and Kalbe, C. (2018) Carnosine prevents oxidative damage in porcine muscle cells. Canadian Meat Council's 98th Annual Conference, May 29-31, 2018, Montreal, Quebec.

    2018 - View publication details

  7. Li, Y., Palin, M.F., Yaylayan, V., Sullivan, B., Fortin, F., Binnie, M.A., Young, M., Cliche, S. and Gariépy, C. (2018) Functional effects of carnosine during in vitro digestion of pork with different fat content and cooking conditions. Canadian Meat Council's 98th Annual Conference, May 29-31, 2018, Montreal, Quebec. (Abstract and poster)

    2018 - View publication details

  8. Gariépy, C. and Palin, M.F. (2018) Carnosine: The meat’s best-kept secret. Canadian Meat Council's 98th Annual Conference, May 29-31, 2018, Montreal, Quebec. (Invited presentation and abstract)

    2018 - View publication details

  9. Facebook: Another tool to help ensure quality pork! M.F. Palin and C. Gariépy. Work on pig muscle carnosine that was posted on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Facebook page. May 4th 2018.

    2018 - View publication details

  10. Des chercheurs d’Agriculture et Agroalimentaire Canada découvrent une molécule qui améliore la qualité de la viande de porc/Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Researchers Find Pork Molecule Boosts Meat Quality. Palin, M.F. and Gariépy, C. April 18th 2018. quebec/sherbrooke-research-and-development-centre/researchers-find-pork-molecule-boosts-meat-quality/?id=1523983629242

    2018 - View publication details

  11. Beaulieu, D., Farmer, C., Brown, J., Lapointe, J. and Palin, M.F. Increasing sow milk yield and piglet growth via low-cost feeding and management strategies during gestation and/or lactation. In Swine Innovation Porc 2017-2018 Final Report. pp. 14-15.

    2018 - View publication details

  12. Sullivan, B., Gariépy, G., Binnie, MS, Fortin, F., Goddard, H., Palin, M.F., Pomar, C. and Young, M. Increasing Canadian pork consumption, market share and competitiveness through enhanced nutritional values and overall quality with a functional molecule in pork meat. In Swine Innovation Porc 2017-2018 Final Report. pp. 50-51.

    2018 - View publication details

  13. Weekly Science Story: Une molécule du porc améliore les avantages nutritionnels/Pork Molecule Improves Nutritional Benefits. February 28th 2018. Claude Gariépy, Simon Cliche, Marie-France Palin, Joël D'Astous-Pagé, Danièle Beaudry, Steve Méthot.

    2018 - View publication details

  14. D'Astous-Pagé, J., Gariépy, C., Blouin, R., Cliche, S., Méthot, S., Sullivan, B., Fortin, F., Palin, M.F. (2017). Identification of single nucleotide polymorphisms in carnosine-related genes and effects of genotypes on pork meat quality attributes. Meat Science, [online] 134 54-60.

    2017 - View publication details

  15. Palin, M.F., Farmer, C., Duarte, C.R.A. (2017). Triennial lactation symposium/bolfa: Adipokines affect mammary growth and function in farm animals. Journal of Animal Science, [online] 95(12), 5689-5700.

    2017 - View publication details

  16. Marie-France Palin et. al. (2017). "Higher concentrations of the anti-aging carnosine in pork increase its nutritional value and quality", Presentation during the Open House event, Sherbrooke R & D Centre (AAFC, Sherbrooke) September 29-30, 2017.

    2017 - View publication details

  17. Farmer, C. and Palin, M.F. (2017) Being too thin in late pregnancy is not a good thing for mammary development. Canadian Hog Journal, Fall 2017, pp 48-49.

    2017 - View publication details

  18. Palin, M.F., Duarte, C.R.A., Comi, M. and Farmer, C. (2017) Prolactin, prolactin receptor and adiponutrin mRNA Abundances in mammary extraparenchymal tissue of gilts are affected by body condition. ASAS-CSAS Annual Meeting & Trade Show, July 8-12, Baltimore, MD, USA Journal of Animal Science Vol. 95, Supplement 4, p. 171-172 doi:10.2527/asasann.2017.347. (Invited speaker).

    2017 - View publication details

  19. Palin, M.F., Farmer, C., Duarte, C.R.A. (2017) Adipokines affect mammary growth and function in farm animals. Triennal Lactation Symposium and Biology of Lactation of Farm Animals. BOLFA Symposium: The Biology of Lactation - From Genes to Cells to Milk Baltimore, MD, USA, July 8th. (Invited Speaker).

    2017 - View publication details

  20. Gariépy, C., Palin, M.F., Pomar, C., Goddard, E., Fortin, F., Sullivan, B., Binnie, M.A. and Young, M. (2017) Higher carnosine level in pork increases its health nutritional value and quality. Canadian Meat Council's 97th Annual Conference. Ottawa, June 5-7. Poster presentation and abstract.

    2017 - View publication details

Research facility

2000 College Street
Sherbrooke, QC J1M 0C8


  • Adjunct professor at the biology department, Sherbrooke University, Sherbrooke, QC.

  • Member of the Genetic Committee of the Canadian Centre for Swine Improvement (CCSI).

  • Member of the Research and Development Genetic Forum, “Centre de Développement du Porc du Québec (CDPQ)”.