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Structure, function and evolution of insect flight muscle

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ABSTRACT

Insects, the largest group of animals on the earth, owe their prosperity to their ability of flight and small body sizes. The ability of flight provided means for rapid translocation. The small body size allowed access to unutilized niches. By acquiring both features, however, insects faced a new problem: They were forced to beat their wings at enormous frequencies. Insects have overcome this problem by inventing asynchronous flight muscle, a highly specialized form of striated muscle capable of oscillating at >1,000 Hz. This article reviews the structure, mechanism, and molecular evolution of this unique invention of nature.

No MeSH data available.


Example of end-on X-ray diffraction pattern from a myofibril of asynchronous IFM, originating from a single hexagonal lattice of myofilaments.
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f5-7_21: Example of end-on X-ray diffraction pattern from a myofibril of asynchronous IFM, originating from a single hexagonal lattice of myofilaments.

Mentions: Furthermore, this regularity is not confined within a sarcomere but extends over a long distance: It is shown that the lattice plane orientation of myofilaments (thick and thin filaments) is strictly preserved along the entire length of a myofibril, although the myofilaments themselves are disrupted at the Z-lines8,9. In other words, the entire myofilament may be regarded as a single, millimeters-long giant protein crystal. Because of this structure, the myofibril gives rise to a number of reflections indexable to a single hexagonal lattice of myofilaments, when irradiated along its long axis by an X-ray microbeam (diameter, 2 μm — the same size as a single myofibril) (Fig. 5). The features as described above are observed in all insects with asynchronous IFM examined to date.


Structure, function and evolution of insect flight muscle
Example of end-on X-ray diffraction pattern from a myofibril of asynchronous IFM, originating from a single hexagonal lattice of myofilaments.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC5036774&req=5

f5-7_21: Example of end-on X-ray diffraction pattern from a myofibril of asynchronous IFM, originating from a single hexagonal lattice of myofilaments.
Mentions: Furthermore, this regularity is not confined within a sarcomere but extends over a long distance: It is shown that the lattice plane orientation of myofilaments (thick and thin filaments) is strictly preserved along the entire length of a myofibril, although the myofilaments themselves are disrupted at the Z-lines8,9. In other words, the entire myofilament may be regarded as a single, millimeters-long giant protein crystal. Because of this structure, the myofibril gives rise to a number of reflections indexable to a single hexagonal lattice of myofilaments, when irradiated along its long axis by an X-ray microbeam (diameter, 2 μm — the same size as a single myofibril) (Fig. 5). The features as described above are observed in all insects with asynchronous IFM examined to date.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

ABSTRACT

Insects, the largest group of animals on the earth, owe their prosperity to their ability of flight and small body sizes. The ability of flight provided means for rapid translocation. The small body size allowed access to unutilized niches. By acquiring both features, however, insects faced a new problem: They were forced to beat their wings at enormous frequencies. Insects have overcome this problem by inventing asynchronous flight muscle, a highly specialized form of striated muscle capable of oscillating at >1,000 Hz. This article reviews the structure, mechanism, and molecular evolution of this unique invention of nature.

No MeSH data available.