A Method to Characterize the Passive Elasticity in Contracting Muscle Bundles

[+] Author and Article Information
J. G. Pinto, A. Boe

Department of Mechanical Engineering, San Diego State University, San Diego, California 92182-0191

J Biomech Eng 113(1), 72-78 (Feb 01, 1991) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2894087 History: Received July 05, 1989; Revised September 05, 1990; Online March 17, 2008


There is concern among researchers whether the passive muscle properties, characterized by purely passive material testing procedures, are an appropriate representation of the actual passive component of the muscle. This aspect is of particular importance in the biomechanical analysis of heart muscle response where it is generally agreed that the so-called parallel elasticity cannot be ignored as is done justifiably in the analysis of skeletal muscle response. In the present article, a method of quantifying the passive elasticity in contracting muscle bundles is presented. The method consists of imposing isometric transients (such as the quick-stretch or quick release) on a muscle bundle during the contraction phase and observing the differences in decayed force levels between a normal twitch and that of a perturbed twitch. The proposed method provides a means of obtaining useful passive properties from contracting muscle bundles and circumvents the difficulty of having to characterize muscle properties from separate experiments on quiescent muscle bundles.

Copyright © 1991 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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