An MR-compatible device for the in situ assessment of isometric contractile performance of mouse hind-limb ankle flexors

M.R. Drost, A.M. Heemskerk, G.J. Strijkers, E.C. Dekkers, G.P.J. van Kranenburg, K. Nicolay

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Abstract

An MR-compatible device for the in situ assessment of isometric contractile performance of mouse hind-limb ankle flexors.

Drost MR, Heemskerk AM, Strijkers GJ, Dekkers EC, Van Kranenburg G, Nicolay K.

Dept. Movement Sciences, Nutrition and Toxicology Research Institute Maastricht, Maastricht University, P.O. Box 616, 6200 MD, Maastricht, The Netherlands, Maarten.Drost@bw.unimaas.nl

The goal of the present study was to develop and evaluate an isometric dynamometer for measuring mouse ankle flexor torque after electric stimulation of the nerve. The dynamometer was to be used within an magnetic resonance (MR) apparatus and should require minimal surgical intervention. To quantify the effect of the magnetic field on contractile parameters, measurements were performed both outside and inside the MR apparatus. The effect of magnetic field gradient switching that accompanies rapid MR scanning was tested also. The set-up required no surgical intervention except for chronic implantation of an electrode. The dynamometer has a high mechanical frequency response (270 Hz). Measured muscle strengths were identical outside and inside the MR scanner. However, during fast magnetic field gradient switching, the variability increased and the measured strength decreased slightly (7%). The noise level of the dynamometer (0.02-0.03 N.mm) was low compared with the strength of the dorsal flexors (2 N.mm). Fast gradient switching increased the noise level (0.07 N.mm). The dynamometer had no observable adverse effects on the quality of the MR images of the mouse hind limb. We conclude that the dynamometer enables accurate measurements of mechanical muscle performance during exercise protocols within an MR apparatus under physiological conditions
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-375
Number of pages4
JournalPflugers Archiv-European Journal of Physiology
Volume447
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003

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