Changes in ATP, phosphocreatine, and 16 metabolites in muscle stimulated for up to 96 hours

Am J Physiol. 1996 Oct;271(4 Pt 1):C1167-71. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.1996.271.4.C1167.


Rabbit tibialis anterior muscles were stimulated continuously at 10 Hz for periods ranging from 2 min to 96 h and were analyzed for energy reserves and metabolic intermediates. Glycogen, ATP and phosphocreatine fell rapidly during the first 5 min of stimulation. Glycogen continued to fall to very low levels, whereas ATP and phosphocreatine rose, reaching 70% of control by 1 h, despite ongoing stimulation. After 2 h, glycogen also increased, regaining control levels in 4 days. Glucose rose to 4.5 times control in 30 min and still exceeded 2.5 times control at 24 h. In the first 2 min, glycolytic intermediates, glucose 6-phosphate (G-6-P), fructose 1,6-bisphosphate, lactate, and pyruvate more than doubled and then returned to control levels or below. Malate and 3-glycerophosphate rose 600 and 200%, respectively. Both of these compounds participate in shuttling reducing equivalents from cytoplasm into mitochondria. Citrate and alpha-ketoglutarate underwent much more modest changes. Glucose 1,6-bisphosphate (G-1,6-P2) fell to one-third of control by 2 h and then rose dramatically at 4 h. At 4 days it was still twice control. The 6-phosphogluconate (6PG) doubled at 2 min, then rose to 12 times control at 2 h, fell somewhat, and peaked at 16 times control at 24 h. Aspartate and alanine both exhibited a biphasic rise in concentration, whereas glutamate fell to 30% in 15 min and rose slowly after 4 h. The rise in glucose was interpreted to be the consequence of rapid glycogenolysis together with inhibition of hexokinase by G-1,6-P2 and elevated G-6-P. Paradoxically, glycogen resynthesis apparently occurred when the glycogen synthase stimulator, G-6-P, was very low, and the glycolysis stimulator, G-1,6-P2, was high. Although G-1,6-P2 is an inhibitor of 6PG dehydrogenase, the timing of the changes in G-1,6-P2 and 6PG levels suggests that the accumulation of 6PG was initiated by some other influence.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Energy Metabolism
  • Female
  • Male
  • Muscles / metabolism*
  • Phosphocreatine / metabolism*
  • Rabbits
  • Time Factors


  • Phosphocreatine
  • Adenosine Triphosphate