Denervation of the expansor secundariorum muscle of the adult and 2 week chicken, by sectioning the brachial plexus, resulted in an approximate twofold increase in dry weight over 8 weeks. Unlike skeletal muscle, no ultrastructural changes were exhibited by the smooth muscle cells for a period of up to 5 months post denervation. No evidence of hypertrophy of the individual muscle cells was observed, but following colchicine treatment a definite increase in the number of mitotic figures was noted within muscle bundles indicating that the increase in dry weight of the expansor muscle is due to hyperplasia of the smooth muscle cells. The results are discussed in relation to in vitro studies of the interaction of sympathetic nerves with smooth muscle.
- Smooth muscle
- Sympathetic nerves