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Arch Oral Biol. 2001 Mar;46(3):215-20.

Differential expression of myosin heavy-chain mRNA in muscles of mastication during functional advancement of the mandible in pigs.

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Department of Orthodontics, Technical University of Dresden, Fetscherstr. 74, 01307, Dresden, Germany.


Surgical and orthodontic treatment of retrognathia aims to improve orofacial function by adaptation and training of muscle capacity, which is connected with a change in muscle fibre-type proportions. The aim here was to analyse the proportion of myosin-heavy chain (MyHC) gene expression in type I (slow twitch/ST) and type IIb (fast twitch/FT) fibres during sagittal advancement of the mandible by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). The experiments were carried out on 10-week-old pigs (six test animals, six controls) over a 28-day period. Six pigs were fitted with acrylic bite blocks for sagittal advancement of the mandible. Tissue was taken from seven different regions of the masseter, temporal, medial pterygoid, and geniohyoid muscles. The 84 samples were used for histological fibre differentiation with ATPase staining and for isolation of total RNA. To measure the two MyHC isoforms, RT-PCR (in a single tube reaction with MyHC I, MyHC IIb, and GAPDH primers) was used. A significant increase was registered in the percentage of ST fibres and in mRNA from MyHC I in the anterior region of the masseter and in the posterior region of the temporal muscle of the treated animals. The proportion of ST fibres to FT fibres was increased by up to 12% after functional advancement of the mandible. The histological findings corresponded with the data for fibre mRNA generated by RT-PCR.

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