Mouse extensor digitorum longus and soleus show distinctive ultrastructural changes induced by veratrine
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We investigated whether veratrine (5 μl, 10 ng/kg) injected into the mouse extensor digitorum longus (EDL) (fast-twitch) and soleus (SOL) (slow-twitch) muscles provokes distinctive ultrastructural disturbances 15, 30 and 60 min later. The mitochondria in SOL were affected earlier (within 15 min) than in EDL. Swelling of the sarcoplasmic reticulum terminal cisternae was more marked in EDL than in SOL and caused distortion of sarcomeres so that fragmentation of myofilaments was more pronounced in EDL. Hypercontracted sarcomeres were seen mainly in SOL and veratrine caused infoldings of the sarcolemma only in this muscle. In both muscles, the T-tubules remained unaffected and by 60 min after veratrine most of the above alterations had reverted to normal. Pretreatment with tetrodotoxin prevented the alterations induced by veratrine. This suggests that most of the alterations resulted from the enhanced influx of Na+ into muscle fibers. These results emphasize the importance of considering the type of muscle when studying the action of myotoxic agents.
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