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Histomorphology of rabbit thigh muscles: establishment of standard control values

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 February 2000

M. RAB
Affiliation:
Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
CH. NEUMAYER
Affiliation:
Division of General Surgery, Department of Surgery, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
R. KOLLER
Affiliation:
Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
L.-P. KAMOLZ
Affiliation:
Institute of Anatomy, Department III, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
W. HASLIK
Affiliation:
Institute of Anatomy, Department III, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
R. GASSNER
Affiliation:
Institute of Anatomy, Department III, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
P. GIOVANOLI
Affiliation:
Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
G. SCHADEN
Affiliation:
Institute of Anatomy, Department III, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
M. FREY
Affiliation:
Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Medical School, University of Vienna, Austria
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Abstract

The thigh muscles of New Zealand White (NZW) rabbits are frequently used in experimental surgery, particularly for evaluation after reinnervation or ischaemia. Although histomorphometric analyses are regularly performed, morphological data for untreated thigh muscles in previously unoperated animals are not available. Specimens from the rectus femoris (RF), vastus medialis (VM) and adductor magnus (AM) muscles from both thighs were harvested in 7 untreated rabbits and were processed for histomorphometric evaluation. The right RF and VM were harvested in a further 5 rabbit hindlimbs after experimental denervation and reinnervation of the contralateral RF and subsequently processed for histomorphometric analysis. Muscle fibre type distribution, diameter and connective tissue content were evaluated on serial transverse cryosections reacted for ATPase and NADH tetrazolium reductase activity and statistical analysis was performed. In all untreated animals RF revealed the highest proportion of type I muscle fibres (right: 8.4±4%, left: 11.4±4.9%), whereas VM showed the highest percentage of IIa fibres (right: 31.9±5.5%, left: 28.3±7.8%) and AM the highest proportion of IIb/d fibres (right: 80.5±8.6%, left: 84.4±6.3%). Fibre type distribution and diameter in rabbits after contralateral experimental operations revealed a statistically significant difference from the data obtained in bilaterally untreated animals. Knowledge of the morphology of untreated muscles is fundamental to the understanding of changes induced by intervention to the ipsi and/or contralateral thigh muscles.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
© Anatomical Society of Great Britain and Ireland 2000

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