Effects of increased occlusal vertical dimension on daily activity and myosin heavy chain composition in rat jaw muscle

Y. Ohnuki, N. Kawai, E. Tanaka, G.E.J. Langenbach, K. Tanne, Y. Saeki

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    Mammalian skeletal muscles change their contractile-protein phenotype in response to mechanical loading and/or chronic electrical stimulation, implying that the phenotypic changes in masticatory muscles might result from new masticatory-loading conditions. To analyze the effects of increased occlusal vertical dimension (OVD) on daily activities and fibre-type compositions in jaw muscles, we measured the total duration of daily activity (duty time) and the myosin heavy chain (MyHC) compositions in the masseter and digastric muscles of freely moving control and bite-opened rats. In the control state, the duty time of the digastric muscle was higher than that of the masseter muscle at activity levels exceeding 5 and 20% of the day's peak activity. The opposite was true at activity levels exceeding 50 and 80% of the day's peak activity. The MyHCs consisted of a mixture of fast and slow types in the digastric muscle. The masseter consisted of mostly fast-type MyHC. The increment of OVD increased not only the duty time at activity levels exceeding 5, 20, 50 and 80% of the day’ peak activity in both muscles but also the proportion of MyHC IIa in the masseter muscle and MyHC I in the digastric muscle at the expense of that of MyHC IIb. These results suggest that the increment of OVD changes masseter and digastric muscles towards slower phenotypes by an increase in their daily activities.
    Original languageUndefined/Unknown
    Pages (from-to)783-789
    JournalArchives of Oral Biology
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

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