Effects of Muscle Length on Intracellular Ca2+ During Isometric Contraction of Tracheal Smooth Muscle

  • Susan J. Gunst
  • Ming Fang Wu
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 304)


In both smooth and striated muscles, the active force a muscle can develop is related to its length. In striated muscles, the decrease in force that occurs as muscle length is decreased below the length of maximal active tension (LO) may result from a number of factors: length-dependent changes in the Ca2+-sensitivity of contractile proteins, length-dependent changes in the amount of activator Ca2+ supplied to contractile proteins, and mechanical factors affecting filament overlap (Gordon et al., 1966; Taylor and Rudel, 1970; Endo, 1973; Allen and Kurihara, 1982; Stephenson and Wendt, 1984; ). Studies of striated muscles, particularly cardiac muscle, suggest that as muscle length is decreased below LO there is a decrease in the activation of the myofilaments (Jewell,1977; Allen and Kurihara,1982; Stephenson and Wendt,1984). Also, when a striated muscle is allowed to shorten during active contraction, force redevelopment immediately after the shortening is reduced. This phenomenon, termed “shortening deactivation,” is dependent on Ca2+ and can be decreased or abolished by increasing the activation of the muscle ( Edman and Kiessling, 1971; Briden and Alpert, 1972; Bodem and Sonnenblick, 1974; Ekelund and Edman, 1982).


Isometric Contraction Muscle Length Active Stress Calcium Transient Muscle Strip 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susan J. Gunst
    • 1
  • Ming Fang Wu
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology and BiophysicsIndiana University School of MedicineIndianapolisUSA

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