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Terminal sprouting in rat sternocostalis muscle following partial denervation

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The sternocostalis muscle of the rat was examined at one to five days after partial denervation and levels of terminal sprouting were assessed.

The removal of one intercostal nerve caused localised degeneration which did not extend more than a few muscle fibres deep into the field of distribution of the adjacent nerve. Terminal sprouting was clearly seen at 24 h after operation and did not appear to develop further up to five days.

There was no difference in the sprouting responses to section of either intercostal nerve 2, 4 or 5. There was, however, a decrease in the response with increasing distance from the cut nerve. No sprouting response was observed in the contralateral muscle.

Comparison of sprouting levels of B and C type end plates revealed a greater percentage of C type end plates with sprouts. However, the response of B type end plates, considered in relation to the levels of spontaneous sprouting, was greater than that of C type end plates.

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Correspondence to Dr. Sheila Kemplay.

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Kemplay, S., Stolkin, C. Terminal sprouting in rat sternocostalis muscle following partial denervation. Cell Tissue Res. 217, 189–198 (1981). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00233837

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Key words

  • Rat
  • Sternocostalis muscle
  • Partial denervation
  • Motor neuron sprouting