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J Gravit Physiol. 2002 Jul;9(1):P127-8.

The influence of 5 weeks of ULLS and resistance exercise on vastus lateralis and soleus myosin heavy chain distribution.

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Nutrition, Metabolism, and Exercise Laboratory, DWR Dept. of Geriatrics and the Dept. of Physiology, Univ. of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR 72205, USA.


We examined the distribution of the myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoforms (I, IIa, IIx) of the leg muscles of three groups of men and women (40 +/- 8y) that completed unilateral lower limb suspension only (ULLS), ULLS plus resistance exercise (ULLS+RE), or RE only (RE) for 5 weeks. Muscle biopsies were obtained pre and post from the vastus lateralis of all three groups and the soleus of the ULLS group. Distributions of all three MHC isoforms in the vastus lateralis were unchanged (p<0.05) from pre to post with ULLS. The soleus muscle, which contained no measurable IIx isoform, was also unchanged (p< 0.05) from pre to post ULLS. These results suggest that the percent distribution of the MHC isoforms per unit muscle protein in both the vastus lateralis and soleus does not change during the first five weeks of simulated microgravity. Further, resistance exercise during five weeks of ULLS or ambulation does not appear to alter the MHC distribution per unit muscle protein of the vastus lateralis.

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