Effects of a titin mutation on force enhancement and force depression in mouse soleus muscles

Uzma Tahir, Jenna A. Monroy, Nicole A. Rice, Kiisa C. Nishikawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


The active isometric force produced by muscles varies with muscle length in accordance with the force-length relationship. Compared with isometric contractions at the same final length, force increases after active lengthening (force enhancement) and decreases after active shortening (force depression). In addition to cross-bridges, titin has been suggested to contribute to force enhancement and depression. Although titin is too compliant in passive muscles to contribute to active tension at short sarcomere lengths on the ascending limb and plateau of the force-length relationship, recent evidence suggests that activation increases titin stiffness. To test the hypothesis that titin plays a role in force enhancement and depression, we investigated isovelocity stretching and shortening in active and passive wild-type and mdm (muscular dystrophy with myositis) soleus muscles. Skeletal muscles from mdm mice have a small deletion in the N2A region of titin and show no increase in titin stiffness during active stretch. We found that: (1) force enhancement and depression were reduced in mdm soleus compared with wild-type muscles relative to passive force after stretch or shortening to the same final length; (2) force enhancement and force depression increased with amplitude of stretch across all activation levels in wild-type muscles; and (3) maximum shortening velocity of wild-type and mdm muscles estimated from isovelocity experiments was similar, although active stress was reduced in mdm compared with wild-type muscles. The results of this study suggest a role for titin in force enhancement and depression, which contribute importantly to muscle force during natural movements.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberjeb197038
JournalJournal of Experimental Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2020


  • Isometric force
  • Locomotion
  • Muscular dystrophy with myositis
  • Sarcomere length
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Stretch

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Physiology
  • Aquatic Science
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Insect Science


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