Relationship between muscle fiber types and sizes and muscle architectural properties in the mouse hindlimb

J Morphol. 1994 Aug;221(2):177-90. doi: 10.1002/jmor.1052210207.


Skeletal muscle fiber and architectural properties both contribute to the functional behavior of a muscle. This study uses discriminant analysis and mathematical modeling to identify the structurally and functionally significant properties. The architectural properties of fiber length, muscle length, and pennation angle are found to be the most structurally significant parameters, whereas fiber length, muscle length, and fiber type distribution are found to be most functionally determining. Architectural speed and fiber type do not appear to be complimentary (i.e., the architectural determinant of speed, fiber length, is not associated with fibers of high intrinsic velocity). However, there does seem to be a synergistic relation between the two property classes and force production. Muscles with large physiological cross sectional areas (PCSAs) tend to contain a greater proportion of larger, faster fibers. Structurally or morphologically significant parameters are not always found to have a large functional effect. Pennation angle, though one of the most structurally significant variables, was found to have very little functional effect.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Discriminant Analysis
  • Female
  • Hindlimb
  • Mice / anatomy & histology*
  • Models, Statistical
  • Muscle Fibers, Skeletal / ultrastructure*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / anatomy & histology*