Article: article from journal or magazin.
Effects of muscle fibre shortening on the characteristics of surface motor unit potentials.
Medical and Biological Engineering and Computing
Traditionally, studies dealing with muscle shortening have concentrated on assessing its impact on conduction velocity, and to this end, electrodes have been located between the end-plate and tendon regions. Possible morphologic changes in surface motor unit potentials (MUPs) as a result of muscle shortening have not, as yet, been evaluated or characterized. Using a convolutional MUP model, we investigated the effects of muscle shortening on the shape, amplitude, and duration characteristics of MUPs for different electrode positions relative to the fibre-tendon junction and for different depths of the MU in the muscle (MU-to-electrode distance). It was found that the effects of muscle shortening on MUP morphology depended not only on whether the electrodes were between the end-plate and the tendon junction or beyond the tendon junction, but also on the specific distance to this junction. When the electrodes lie between the end-plate and tendon junction, it was found that (1) the muscle shortening effect is not important for superficial MUs, (2) the sensitivity of MUP amplitude to muscle shortening increases with MU-to-electrode distance, and (3) the amplitude of the MUP negative phase is not affected by muscle shortening. This study provides a basis for the interpretation of the changes in MUP characteristics in experiments where both physiological and geometrical aspects of the muscle are varied.
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