A "give" in tension and sarcomere dynamics in cardiac muscle relaxation.

J. W. Krueger, K. Tsujioka, T. Okada, C. S. Peskin, H. M. Lacker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Isometric relaxation in cardiac sarcomeres is characterised by an early, very slow phase of tension fall which is terminated by a 'give' in tension. A 'give' which occurs during relaxation in cardiac muscle can not be attributed to decrease in myofilament overlap. After the 'give' asynchronous motion occurs between sarcomeres, but the duration and extent of their displacement is limited. Intriguingly, the effect of isotonic displacements on the early fall in the velocity of sarcomere shortening indicates that an internal resistance increases near the peak of contraction. The complex shape of the sarcomere's complete force-velocity relation, with lengthening motions in particular, was consistent with an idealized model of cross-bridge cycling. The sarcomere's resistance to stretch is high at low velocity, but it diminishes to reveal yielding at larger velocities. Relative to tension, the resistance to yielding does not decrease during relaxation, and it may actually increase. The decay of isometric tension after a controlled stretch also slows during relaxation. Consequently, cycling slows in those cross-bridges which form (or persist but produce less force) later in contraction. Changes in cross-bridge properties may restrict sarcomere shortening, prolong activation, but promote a disequilibrium which favors rapid relaxation in cardiac muscle.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)567-580
Number of pages14
JournalAdvances in experimental medicine and biology
StatePublished - 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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