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J Physiol. 1983 Jun;339:87-95.

Temperature-dependent transitions in isometric contractions of rat muscle.


The effect of temperature on tetanic tension development was examined in extensor digitorum longus (fast-twitch) and soleus (slow-twitch) muscles of the rat, in vitro and with direct stimulation. The temperature range was from 35 to 10 degrees C. 2. The maximum tetanic tension decreased slightly on cooling from 35 to 25 degrees C. Cooling below 20 degrees C resulted in a marked depression of tetanic tension. The results were similar in the two muscles. 3. Analysis (in the form of Arrhenius plots) of the rate of tetanic tension development and relaxation clearly showed the occurrence of two phases in their temperature dependence, due to an increased temperature sensitivity below about 25 degrees C. Arrhenius activation energy estimates for temperatures lower than 21 degrees C were around twice as high as those for temperatures higher than 24 degrees C in both muscles.

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