- Demonstrate that ATP, potassium ions, and magnesium ions are required for muscle contraction
- Observe and measure contraction of muscle fibers
- Observe striated muscle tissue under a microscope
Grade 9–College. Amazingly, glycerinated muscle tissue, although no longer alive, retains the ability to contract when ATP and the appropriate ions are added. Using these materials, students can observe and measure muscle shortening without a microscope. This activity is designed for minimal prep time and can be completed in 1 class period. The glycerinated muscle used in this set is processed from striated muscle tissue. Much of the water-soluble content of the muscle fibers is extracted in cold glycerol.
The striations are left intact and are easily observed with a microscope. We prepare the ATP solution as close to shipping time as practical to reduce loss in chemical activity. When the materials arrive, refrigerate the solution at 4 to 10° C and use them within 7 days. Place the tube with muscle strip in a freezer compartment at -20 to -10° C. The strip of glycerinated muscle can be cut into 2- to 3-cm lengths and is sufficient for 4 to 8 students or groups. With instructions. Note:Perishable; please provide use date on order.