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Longitudinal fibre splitting in muscular dystrophy: a serial cinematographic study
  1. Edward R. Isaacs1,
  2. Walter G. Bradley2,
  3. Gerald Henderson
  1. Muscular Dystrophy Group Research Laboratories, Newcastle General Hospital, Newcastle upon Tyne


    A technique of block surface-staining and serial cinematography was modified to review serial sections of normal and dystrophic muscle from the Bar Harbor 129 Re strain of mice as a preliminary study of fibre splitting in dystrophic muscle. Using this technique, muscle fibres were reconstructed for up to 1·5 mm of their length without difficulty. Split fibres were identified only when the actual separation of fibres was observed. Splitting was seen to be a significant cause of the variations in fibre diameter and was at times responsible for the formation of groups of small atrophic fibres which resembled those seen in denervation atrophy. Complex multiple splitting and recombination of daughter and parent fibres was also observed and reconstructed to scale. These results may have considerable significance for the interpretation of physiological data on both human and murine dystrophic muscle.

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    • 1 Present address: Division of Neurology, Medical College of Virginia, Health Sciences Division, Virginia Commonwealth University, 1200 East Broad Street, Richmond, Virginia 23219, U.S.A.

    • 2 Reprint requests to W.G.B.

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