Age Related Changes of Muscle Spindles of Rat Soleus Muscle

  • Volkmar Hartung
  • Gerhard Asmussen


Muscular strength and endurance as well as motor skill decrease in old age. This is accompanied by a loss of motor units, a decrease in the number of extrafusai muscle fibers (eff) and by processes of denervation and reinnervation (for ref. see Vandervoort et al., 1986). However, there are no systematic investigations of the influence of life span on the structure and function of mechanoreceptors involved in motor control, such as muscle spindles (msp) and their intrafusal muscle fibers (iff). We therefore investigated the influence of age on the morphology of msp of a postural muscle of the rat using conventional histological techniques.


Motor Unit Soleus Muscle Muscle Spindle Muscular Strength Postural Muscle 
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  1. Kalugina, M.A., 1956, A contribution to the development of proprioceptors in striated muscles of mammals (in Russian), Arkh. Anat. Gist. Embr., 33: 59.Google Scholar
  2. Vandervoort, A.A., Hayes, K.C., and Belanger, A.V., 1986, Strength and endurance of skeletal muscle in the elderly, Physiotherapy Canada, 38: 167.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Volkmar Hartung
    • 1
  • Gerhard Asmussen
    • 1
  1. 1.Carl-Ludwig Institute of PhysiologyKarl-Marx UniversityLeipzigDeutschland

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