Sequences Of Intrafusal Fiber Formation Are Muscle-dependent In Rat Hindlimbs


Sequences Of Intrafusal Fiber Formation Are Muscle-dependent In Rat Hindlimbs


Kucera J; Walro J M


Anatomy and Embryology




A rat muscle spindle typically contains four intrafusal fibers - one nuclear bag(2), one nuclear bag, and two nuclear chain fibers. We compared the sequence of formation of the three intrafusal fiber types among the tibialis anterior (TA), soleus (SOL) and medial gastrocnemius (RIG) muscles using immunocytochemistry of spindle-specific myosin heavy chain isoforms. Spindles of the TA began to differentiate earlier and acquired the full complement of intrafusal fibers sooner than spindles of the SOL or MG muscles. At the onset of spindle assembly, the intrafusal myotubes expressed myosin heavy chains similar to those expressed by extrafusal myotubes. The first intrafusal myotube then differentiated into the bag, fiber regardless of the muscle. However, the fate of the second-forming intrafusal myotube varied among the muscles studied. It usually differentiated into a chain fiber in the TA, into a bag(1) fiber in the SOL, and into either a bag(1) or a chain in the MG. The fate of the third-forminge was reciprocal to that of the second; i.e. in those spindles in which the bag(1) fiber was second to form, a chain was third, and vice versa. The fourth and last intrafusal myotube gave rise to a chain fiber. The inter- and intramuscular variability in the fate of intrafusal myotubes of the second and third generation argues against the existence of a program intrinsic to the myotubes that would mandate their differentiation along specific paths. Rather, an extrinsic regulatory factor, probably associated with the primary afferent neuron, may govern differentiation of pluripotential myotubes into particular types of intrafusal fiber. The fate of the intrafusal myotubes might then depend on the timing of the regulatory effect of afferents relative to the stage of development of the intrafusal bundle.


Anatomy & Morphology; cat; development; Developmental Biology; embryonic-development; expression; innervation; intrafusal fibers; motor; muscle; muscle spindles; myosin heavy chains; myosin heavy-chain; neonatal rats; skeletal-muscle; slow myosin; spindles; tenuissimus muscles



Journal Article or Conference Abstract Publication

Search for Full-text

Users with a NEOMED Library login can search for full-text journal articles at the following url:


Article information provided for research and reference use only. All rights are retained by the journal listed under publisher and/or the creator(s).








Kucera J; Walro J M, “Sequences Of Intrafusal Fiber Formation Are Muscle-dependent In Rat Hindlimbs,” NEOMED Bibliography Database, accessed February 25, 2024,