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Comparison of fiber types in skeletal muscles from ten animal species based on sensitivity of the myofibrillar actomyosin ATPase to acid or copper


Comparisons were made of the histochemical characteristics of skeletal muscle from 10 animal species. The basic comparison was made from the staining patterns for the myofibrillar actomyosin ATPase produced by preincubation of fresh frozen cross-sections of muscle at alkaline pH (10.30) or acid pH (4.60) with those produced by preincubation in media containing Cu2+ at alkaline pH (10.30), near neutral pH (7.40), or acid pH (4.60). Muscle sections were also stained for reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide tetrazolium reductase and alpha-glycerophosphate dehydrogenase to provide an indication of the relative oxidative and glycolytic capacity of the different fiber types. Type II fibers in mixed fibered muscles were either very sensitive, moderately sensitive, or relatively insensitive to inactivation of the myofibrillar actomyosin ATPase after acid preincubation. These fibers were identified as type IIA1, IIA2, and IIA3, respectively. The myofibrillar actomyosin ATPase of the type I fibers of these muscles, with the exception of those in mouse muscle, was activated by pretreatment with acid. A separation of animal species was possible based on the stability of the IIA1 fibers to inclusion of Cu2+ in the preincubation medium. For one group of animals (rat, mouse, monkey, man, dog, rabbit, and cow), a reciprocal relationship existed between lability to acid and stability to Cu2+ for type IIA1 and IIA3 fibers, respectively. For the second group of animals (horse, ass, and cat) there was a parallel relationship between lability or stability of the type IIA1 and IIA3 fibers to pretreatment with either acid or Cu2+

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Correspondence to P. D. Gollnick.

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Visiting scholar from the Laboratory of Biomechanics and Physiology, College of General Education, Yamaguchi University, Yamaguchi 753, Japan

Supported in part by Washington State Equine Research Program grant #105 3925 0042

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Matoba, H., Allen, J.R., Bayly, W.M. et al. Comparison of fiber types in skeletal muscles from ten animal species based on sensitivity of the myofibrillar actomyosin ATPase to acid or copper. Histochemistry 82, 175–183 (1985).

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  • Fiber Type
  • Type IIA1
  • Nicotinamide Adenine Dinucleotide
  • Nicotinamide Adenine
  • Mouse Muscle