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MUSCLE HISTOLOGY

OVERVIEW and MUSCLE


CLASSIFICATION
Muscle tissue is responsible for movement of the
body
Characterized by aggregates of specialized,
elongated cells arranged in parallel array that
have the primary role of contraction
Myofilament interaction in the sarcoplasm is
responsible for muscle cell contraction
Thin filaments
Composed primarily of the protein actin
Thick filaments
Composed of myosin II
OVERVIEW and MUSCLE CLASSIFICATION
Two principal types of muscle:
Striated muscle: Exhibit cross striations
Skeletal muscle: attached to and responsible for skeletal
movement, maintenance of body position and posture
Visceral striated muscle: restricted to the soft tissues (i.e.
tongue, pharynx, lumbar diaphragm, and upper esophagus)
Roles in speech, breathing, and swallowing.
Cardiac muscle: found in the wall of the heart and in the
base of the large veins that empty into the heart
Smooth muscle: No cross striations
restricted to the viscera and vascular system, the arrector
pili muscles of the skin, and the intrinsic muscles of the eye
SKELETAL MUSCLE
Each muscle cell (muscle fiber) is a multinucleated
syncytium
Formed via fusion of small, individual muscle cells
called myoblasts
Polygonal shape in cross section
Consists of striated muscle fibers held together by
connective tissue
Endomysium
Perimysium
Epimysium
Nuclei are located in the cytoplasm immediately
beneath the plasma membrane (sarcolemma)
SKELETAL MUSCLE
CT associated with the Muscle:
Endomysium:
Delicate layer of reticular fibers immediately surrounding
individual muscle fibers
Only small-diameter blood vessels and the finest neuronal
branches are present
Perimysium
Surrounds a group of fibers to form a bundle or fascicle
Fascicles are functional units of muscle fibers that tend to work
together to perform a specific function
Larger blood vessels and nerves are present
Epimysium
Surrounds a collection of fascicles that constitutes the muscle
Penetrated by the major vascular and nerve supply of the muscle
SKELETAL MUSCLE
The structural and functional subunit of the
muscle fiber is the myofibril
Myofibrils are composed of bundles of
myofilaments
Myofilaments:
Individual polymers of myosin II (thick filaments) and
actin (thin filaments)
Actual contractile elements of striated muscle
The bundles of myofilaments are surrounded by
sarcoplasmic reticulum
Cross-striations are the principal histologic
feature of striated muscle.
SKELETAL MUSCLE: MYOCYTE
Show cross-striations of alternating light and
dark bands in longitudinal section under LM
A bands (Anisotropic): Darker Bands
I bands (isotropic): Lighter Bands

A
I

I
SKELETAL MUSCLE: MYOCYTE
Under TEM: I band is bisected by a dark
transverse line (Z line)
Sarcomere:
Repetitive functional subunit of the contractile
apparatus
Extends from Z line to Z line
SKELETAL MUSCLE: SATELLITE CELLS
Responsible for the skeletal muscles ability to
regenerate
Normally quiescent but becomes activated and re-
enter the cell cycle in response to muscle injuries
Proliferate and give rise to new myoblasts
Interposed between the plasma membrane of
the muscle fiber and its external lamina
Small cells with scant cytoplasm
Single nucleus with a denser and coarser
chromatin than a muscle cell nuclei
SARCOPLASMIC RETICULUM and
TRANSVERSE TUBULE SYSTEM
Sarcoplasmic Reticulum:
Smooth endoplasmic reticulum (SER) in a muscle
fiber
Specialized for Ca2+ ion sequestration
Depolarization T-tubules Release of Ca2+ ions
from SR
CARDIAC MUSCLE
Exclusive to the myocardium
Same types and arrangement of
contractile filaments as skeletal muscle
Exhibit cross-striations and branching
CARDIAC MUSCLE
Spontaneous rhythmic contraction
Involuntary
Autorhythmicity
Centrally located nucleus
With densely staining cross-bands
(intercalated discs)
No regenerative capacity beyond early
childhood
CARDIAC MUSCLE
The intercalated discs represent junctions between
cardiac muscle cells
Fascia adherens
Responsible for ID staining in routine H&E
Holds the cardiac muscle cells at their ends to form the functional
cardiac muscle fiber
Maculae adherens (desmosomes)
Bind the individual muscle cells to one another
Prevent the cells from pulling apart under the strain of regular
repetitive contractions
Gap junctions (communicating junctions)
Provide ionic continuity between adjacent cardiac muscle cells,
thus allowing informational macromolecules to pass from cell to
cell
Permits cardiac muscle fibers to behave as a syncytium while
retaining cellular integrity and individuality
SMOOTH MUSCLE
Occurs as bundles or sheets of elongated
fusiform cells with finely tapered ends
Sidepolar arrangement of myosin heads
(skeletal muscle bipolar)
Dense bodies instead of Z disc
Involuntary control
No striations
SMOOTH MUSCLE
Interconnected by gap junctions
Eosinophilic cytoplasm due to concentrations
of actin and myosin
Centrally located nuclei
Lacks a T-system
Lines walls of viscera
Longitudinal or circular arrangement
Alternate contraction results to peristalsis on the
GI
SMOOTH MUSCLE
Structure of Smooth Muscle
Possess a contractile apparatus of thin (actin) and
thick filaments (myosin II) and a cytoskeleton of
desmin and vimentin intermediate filaments
Actin is the smooth muscle isoform of tropomyosin
No troponin associated with smooth muscle tropomyosin
Essential proteins for smooth muscle contraction
initiation and regulation:
Myosin light chain kinase (MLCK): enzyme that
initiates the contraction cycle after its activation by
Ca2calmodulin complex
Calmodulin: Ca2-binding protein, regulates the
intracellular concentration of Ca2
SMOOTH MUSCLE: RENEWAL and
REPAIR
Respond to injury by undergoing mitosis
Contains regularly replicating populations of
cells:
Smooth muscle in the uterus proliferates during
the normal menstrual cycle and during pregnancy
Smooth muscle of the muscularis externa of the
stomach and colon regularly replicates and may
even slowly thicken during life