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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2006 Sep;38(9):1601-7.

Power output and muscle myosin heavy chain composition in young and elderly men.

Author information

  • 1Department of Physiology, Royal Free and University College Medical School, University College London, Rowland Hill Street, London,United Kingdom. s.pearson@salford.ac.uk

Abstract

PURPOSE:

Aging is associated with a decline in muscle volume, power output, and the velocity at which peak power (Vopt) occurs. The current study aimed to examine the relationship between lower-limb power output characteristics, muscle myosin heavy chain (MHC) composition, and lean limb volume.

METHODS:

Lower-limb power output during repeated efforts on an inertial sprint cycle and single-leg thrusts on the modified Nottingham power rig was studied in seven young and seven old males in relation to muscle MHC isoform composition of the vastus lateralis.

RESULTS:

Older subjects produced significantly lower power outputs and Vopt under all conditions (P < 0.01) and had lower proportions of fast MHC isoforms (P< 0.05). Peak power output during cycling was significantly related to lower-limb lean volume (r = 0.92, P < 0.05), whereas Vopt during sprint cycling was closely related to vastus lateralis MHC-II composition (r = 0.80, P < 0.05).

CONCLUSIONS:

These results provide further evidence of the importance of fast myosin isoform composition in the maintenance of dynamic muscle function in later life and particularly for maximal cycling performance.

PMID:
16960521
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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