Regional metabolic differences in the rat diaphragm. Academic Article uri icon


  • This study characterized the biochemical properties of the rat diaphragm by measuring the activities of selected citric acid cycle and glycolytic enzymes. The diaphragm was removed from 10 female Sprague-Dawley rats (180 days old) and dissected into five discrete anatomic regions: crural (region 1), left posterior costal (region 2), left anterior costal (region 3), right anterior costal (region 4), and right posterior costal (region 5). Sections were assayed for total protein concentration and the activities of succinate dehydrogenase (SDH) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). The SDH activity in the crural region was approximately 18% lower (P less than 0.05) than that in any costal region. Furthermore, protein concentration was significantly lower (P less than 0.05) in the crural region compared with all costal regions. In contrast, costal regions 2-5 did not significantly differ from each other in protein concentration or SDH activity. LDH activity did not differ significantly (P greater than 0.05) between regions. Finally, the LDH-to-SDH activity ratio was significantly higher (P less than 0.05) in the crural diaphragm compared with all costal regions. We conclude that the crural region of the rat diaphragm is significantly lower in oxidative capacity than all the costal regions. Investigators who use a rodent model to study diaphragmatic function and plasticity should consider the oxidative heterogeneity of the diaphragm when designing experiments.

published proceedings

  • J Appl Physiol (1985)

author list (cited authors)

  • Powers, S. K., Lawler, J., Criswell, D., Silverman, H., Forster, H. V., Grinton, S., & Harkins, D.

citation count

  • 29

complete list of authors

  • Powers, SK||Lawler, J||Criswell, D||Silverman, H||Forster, HV||Grinton, S||Harkins, D

publication date

  • August 1990