Dystrophic Chicken Muscle: Altered Synaptic Acetylcholinesterase

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Science  27 Apr 1973:
Vol. 180, Issue 4084, pp. 406-408
DOI: 10.1126/science.180.4084.406


Individual motor endplates in the skeletal muscles of chickens genetically homozygous for muscular dystrophy have been compared with those in normal chickens. Measurements were made there, by specific autoradiographic techniques, of the numbers of total cholinesterase-like molecules and of acetylcholinesterase molecules. The acetylcholinesterase is distinctly decreased at the endplates in dystrophic muscles. The various data available on these muscles are compatible with the concept that a neural factor which determines the synaptic acetylcholinesterase, along with a number of other characters in the muscle cell, is defective in this disorder.