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Biophys J. 1977 Mar;17(3):213-28.

Elastic and viscous properties of resting frog skeletal muscle.


The mechanical properties of the resting, whole semitendinosus muscle of the frog have been characterized as functions of both muscle length and temperature. Measurements were made of pseudorandom white noise (PRWN) displacements (less than 10 A/half-sarcomere) applied to the muscle and the force responses to these movements. Signal correlation techniques were then used to obtain the dynamic modulus function for the muscle in the frequency range 2.44-320 Hz. This function was represented by a series combination of a Voigt element and a time delay element for tension propagation along the muscle. A dynamic elastic modulus (E), coefficient of damping (B), and tension transmission velocity (V) were measured for resting muscle on the basis of this model. For each of these parameters, a marked variation with sarcomere length (s) was found. The mean values for E and B at LO (s=2.25 mum) were 1.84+/-0.24 X 10(5) N/m2 and 2.33+/-0.25 X 10(2) Ns/m2, respectively. Further, B demonstrated a negative temperature dependence, Q10=0.78 (P less than 0.05), in the range s=2.6-3.0 mum, while E was not significantly temperature dependent. The length-dependent variations of E and B are interpreted as deriving from both passive muscle elements and attached crossbridges. Velocity was calculated at a single displacing frequency for every experiment; the mean value at LO and all temperatures was v=11.7+/-0.6 m/s. Velocity was also calculated as a function of frequency within several experiments: the results indicate considerable variation of v with frequency.

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