The description of the molecular events that produce tension in a contracting muscle is often called mechanochemistry, a term that well describes the synthesis of the two key elements in the contractile cycle. One of those elements is mechanical: we need to be able to describe in detail, with resolution down to the atomic level, the sequence of conformational changes that cause the thick and thin filaments to slide past one another. The other element is chemical: we need to determine the sequence of biochemical reactions in the contractile cycle and to measure the energetic and kinetic parameters of each of those reactions. Finally, the problem requires synthesis: we need to explain the coupling of the mechanical and chemical events. Only then will we understand how the chemical energy released by the hydrolysis of ATP is converted to the mechanical work performed by the contracting muscle.
KeywordsIntrinsic Viscosity Thin Filament Myosin Head Thick Filament Rotational Correlation Time
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Dalton, L. R., 1976, Saturation transfer spectroscopy, Adv. Magn. Reson. 8:149.Google Scholar
- Highsmith, S., 1978, The effects of divalent cations on the rotational mobility of myosin, heavy meromyosin and myosin subfragment-1 and on the binding of heavy meromyosin to actin, Biochim. Biophys. Acta 536:156.Google Scholar
- Huxley, H. E., and Brown, W., 1967, The low-angle X-ray diagram of vertebrate striated muscle and its behavior during contraction and rigor, J. Mol. Biol. 30:383.Google Scholar
- Mendelson, R. A., Mowery, P. C., Botts, J., and Cheung, H. C., 1972, The segmental flexibility of the S-l moiety of myosin, Biophys. J. 12:281a.Google Scholar
- Takahashi, K., 1978, Topography of the myosin molecule as visualized by an improved negative staining method, J. Biochem. 83:905.Google Scholar
- Wahl, P., 1975, Decay of fluorescence anisotropy, in: Biochemical Fluorescence: Concepts (R. F. Chen and H. Edelhoch, eds.), pp. 1–41, Marcel Dekker, New York.Google Scholar
- Weber, A., and Murray, J. M., 1973, Molecular control mechanisms in muscle contraction, Physiol. Rev. 53:612.Google Scholar
- Yguerabide, J., 1972, Nanosecond fluorescence spectroscopy of macromolecules, Methods En-zymol. 26C:498.Google Scholar