How flexible is the neural control of muscle properties?

V. R. Edgerton, T. P. Martin, S. C. Bodine, R. R. Roy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The issue addressed in this paper is to what extent are selected physiological properties and associated protein systems of muscle fibres controlled or regulated by neuronal systems. One extreme position would be that all muscle proteins are controlled completely by the neural system that innervates the muscle. The opposite position would be that none of the muscle proteins are under neural influence. Although the concept that there is complete neural control of all proteins has generally received more support, it is more likely that there is only partial neural control of some proteins. Identical physiological, morphological and metabolic properties of all muscle fibres within a motor unit would suggest a complete neural control of all protein systems in muscle fibres. However, evidence against this idea is provided by the marked heterogeneity in the activities of two enzymes, alpha glycerophosphate dehydrogenase and succinic dehydrogenase (SDH), and in the wide variations in muscle fibre cross-sectional areas among fibres of the same motor unit in the cat soleus and tibialis anterior.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)393-402
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Experimental Biology
VolumeVOL. 115
StatePublished - 1985

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)


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