Structural and functional development of cricket ring muscles.
The sizes of the unifunctional dorsal longitudinal (DLM) and bifunctional subalar (SA) metathoracic flight muscles of the cricket Teleogryllus oceanicus increase by more than an order of magnitude between the second instar before the terminal molt and the tenth day of adult life. During the same developmental period isometric twitch duration (onset to 50% relaxation, 25 degrees C) varies little, while muscle mitochondrial content increased by a factor of ten as measured by stereological analysis of electron micrographs and citrate synthase activity (mumoles citrate . min-1 . gm protein-1, 25 degrees C). The wing muscles of adults have abundant sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR), narrow myofibrils, and a high volume density of mitochondria. At two molts from adulthood muscles that will later be used in flight behavior also have narrow myofibrils and abundant SR, but unlike muscles at later stages, nymphal muscles have a low volume density of mitochondria. At the terminal molt muscles have at least as much SR as is seen in muscles at the tenth day of adult life, and the myofibrils are also more narrow at the earlier stage. Since there is significant variation in muscle structure and little change in twitch duration during late development, the efficacy of the SR in releasing and resequestering CA2+ is seemingly lower in muscles at the terminal molt, a time of rapid muscle growth.
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