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Light diffraction by striated muscle fibers in the transverse direction



Light diffraction by striated muscle fibers in the transverse direction



Journal of Muscle Research & Cell Motility 4(5): 557-568



The intensity of the diffraction line, the transverse intensity, of a single [frog] skeletal muscle fiber illuminated at normal incidence with a laser beam decayed monotonically to zero at both ends of the diffraction line. This characteristic decay was observed for most illuminated spots of the fiber. However, for a few spots the transverse intensity showed distinctive oscillations. The intensity distribution of the diffraction line is explained by a diffraction model in which the muscle fiber acts as a bundle of randomly packed myofibrils of different diameters. The equatorial intensity was calculated as a function of myofibrillar diameter dispersion. The comparison between the theoretical curves and measurements yields an estimation for the myofibrillar diameter dispersion. The calculations predict that the transverse intensity would exhibit oscillations when the diameter dispersion is < 22%. The diameter dispersions estimated by light diffractometry and EM are compared.

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Accession: 005809833

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PMID: 6643678


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