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Intracellular Acidosis Enhances the Excitability of Working Muscle

Science  20 Aug 2004:
Vol. 305, Issue 5687, pp. 1144-1147
DOI: 10.1126/science.1101141

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Abstract

Intracellular acidification of skeletal muscles is commonly thought to contribute to muscle fatigue. However, intracellular acidosis also acts to preserve muscle excitability when muscles become depolarized, which occurs with working muscles. Here, we show that this process may be mediated by decreased chloride permeability, which enables action potentials to still be propagated along the internal network of tubules in a muscle fiber (the T system) despite muscle depolarization. These results implicate chloride ion channels in muscle function and emphasize that intracellular acidosis of muscle has protective effects during muscle fatigue.

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