MICROSCAPE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY MICROSCAPE / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Light microscopy of skeletal muscle fibres seen in longitudinal section. The alternating banding pattern represents a highly ordered assembly of contractile filaments called A bands (dark) and I bands (light). Z lines are in the middle of each I band and the interval between successive Z lines is the smallest unit of muscle contraction and is called a sarcomere. Each skeletal muscle fibre consists of hundreds or thousands of individual cells that have fused together. Hence a fibre has multiple nuclei; these are positioned at the periphery of the cell. Magnification x600 when printed at 10 cm.
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