Collagen and fibronectin in a healing skeletal muscle injury. An immunohistological study of the effects of physical activity on the repair of injured gastrocnemius muscle in the rat

J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1985 Nov;67(5):820-8. doi: 10.1302/0301-620X.67B5.3902851.


The presence of the connective tissue components fibronectin and the different types of collagen was demonstrated by histological and immunohistological methods in the granulation and scar tissue of a healing injury in rat muscle. The effects of physical activity on granulation tissue production, scar formation and muscle regeneration at various stages of healing were studied. It was shown that immobilisation after injury accelerates granulation tissue production, but if continued too long, leads to contraction of the scar and to poor structural organisation of the components of regenerating muscle and scar tissue. However, a certain period of immobilisation, about five days for rat muscle, is required to allow newly-formed granulation tissue to cover the injured area and to have sufficient tensile strength to withstand subsequent mobilisation. This mobilisation, at the correct interval, seems essential for the quicker resorption of scar tissue and the better structural organisation of the muscle.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Collagen / analysis*
  • Fibronectins / analysis*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Granulation Tissue / cytology
  • Granulation Tissue / immunology
  • Granulation Tissue / metabolism*
  • Histocytochemistry
  • Male
  • Muscles / injuries*
  • Physical Exertion*
  • Rabbits
  • Rats
  • Rats, Inbred Strains
  • Wounds and Injuries / metabolism*
  • Wounds and Injuries / physiopathology


  • Fibronectins
  • Collagen