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News Physiol Sci. 2002 Feb;17:17-21.

Muscle fatigue: lactic acid or inorganic phosphate the major cause?

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Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Karolinska Institutet, SE-171 77 Stockholm, Sweden.


Intracellular acidosis due mainly to lactic acid accumulation has been regarded as the most important cause of skeletal muscle fatigue. Recent studies on mammalian muscle, however, show little direct effect of acidosis on muscle function at physiological temperatures. Instead, inorganic phosphate, which increases during fatigue due to breakdown of creatine phosphate, appears to be a major cause of muscle fatigue.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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