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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Regional differences in fibre type composition in the human temporalis muscle.

Anatomical and electromyographic studies point to regional differences in function in the human temporalis muscle. During chewing and biting the anterior portions of the muscle are in general more intensively activated and they are capable of producing larger forces than the posterior portions. It was hypothetised that this heterogeneity in function is reflected in the fibre type composition of the muscle. The composition and surface area of different fibre types in various anteroposterior portions of the temporalis muscle were investigated in 7 cadavers employing immunohistochemistry with a panel of monoclonal antibodies against different isoforms of myosin heavy chain. Pure slow muscle fibres, type I, differed strongly in number across the muscle. In the most posterior portion of the muscle there were 24% type I fibres, in the intermediate portion 57%, and in the most anterior portion 46%. The mean fibre cross-sectional area (m-fcsa) of type I fibres was 1849 microm2, which did not differ significantly across the muscle. The proportion of pure fast muscle fibres, type IIA and IIX, remained more or less constant throughout the muscle at 13% and 11% respectively; their m-fcsa was 1309 microm2 and 1206 microm2, respectively, which did not differ significantly throughout the muscle. Pure type IIB fibres were not found. The relative proportion of hybrid fibres was 31% and did not differ significantly among the muscle portions. Fibre types I + IIA and cardiac alpha + I + IIA were the most abundant hybrid fibre types. In addition, 5% of the type I fibres had an additional myosin isoform which has only recently been described by means of electrophoresis and was named Ia. In the present study they were denoted as hybrid type I + Ia muscle fibres. It is concluded that intramuscular differences in type I fibre distribution are in accordance with regional differences in muscle function.[1]


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