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Biomechanical characterization of the urethral musculature

Jankowski, RJ and Prantil, RL and Chancellor, MB and De Groat, WC and Huard, J and Vorp, DA (2006) Biomechanical characterization of the urethral musculature. American Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology, 290 (5). ISSN 0363-6127

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Rigorous study of the associations between urethral structural anatomy and biomechanical function is necessary to advance the understanding of the development, progression, and treatment of urethral pathologies. An ex vivo model was utilized to define the relative biomechanical contributions of the active (muscle) elements of the female urethra relative to its passive (noncontractile) elements. Whole urethras from female, adult rats were tested under a range of applied intraluminal pressures (0 to 20 mmHg) as a laser micrometer simultaneously measured midurethral outer diameter. Active tissue characterization was performed during induced contraction of either smooth muscle alone (Nω-nitro-L-arginine, phenylephrine), striated muscle alone (sodium nitroprusside, atropine, hexamethonium, acetylcholine), or during collective activation of both muscles (Nω-nitro-L- arginine, phenylephrine, acetylcholine). The subsequent collection of paired passive biomechanical responses permitted the determination of parameters related to intrinsic muscle contractile function. Activation of each muscle layer significantly influenced the biomechanical responses of the tissue. Measures of muscle responsiveness over a wide range of sustained opposing pressures indicated that an activated striated muscle component was approximately one-third as effective as activated smooth muscle in resisting tissue deformation. The maximum circumferential stress generated by the striated muscle component under these conditions was also determined to be approximately one-third of that generated by the smooth muscle (748 ± 379 vs. 2,229 ± 409 N/m2). The experiments quantitatively reveal the relative influence of the intrinsic urethral smooth and striated muscle layers with regard to their effect on the mechanical properties and maximum functional responses of the urethra to applied intralumenal stresses in the complete absence of extrinsic influences. Copyright © 2006 the American Physiological Society.


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Jankowski, RJ
Prantil, RL
Chancellor, MB
De Groat, WC
Huard, J
Vorp, DAvorp@pitt.eduVORP0000-0002-6467-2151
Date: 1 May 2006
Date Type: Publication
Journal or Publication Title: American Journal of Physiology - Renal Physiology
Volume: 290
Number: 5
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.1152/ajprenal.00330.2005
Schools and Programs: School of Medicine > Orthopaedic Surgery
School of Medicine > Urology
Swanson School of Engineering > Bioengineering
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0363-6127
MeSH Headings: Animals; Biomechanical Phenomena; Female; Muscle Contraction--physiology; Muscle, Skeletal--physiology; Muscle, Smooth--physiology; Pressure; Rats; Rats, Sprague-Dawley; Urethra--anatomy & histology; Urethra--physiology
PubMed ID: 16368741
Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2014 14:50
Last Modified: 02 Dec 2021 18:55


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