Financial support for this work was provided by the Fonds de développement pédagogique from the Université du Québec à Rimouski.
Energetic metabolism and biochemical adaptation: A bird flight muscle model†
Article first published online: 3 NOV 2006
Copyright © 2006 International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Inc.
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education
Volume 34, Issue 2, pages 125–128, March 2006
How to Cite
Rioux, P. and Blier, P. U. (2006), Energetic metabolism and biochemical adaptation: A bird flight muscle model. Biochem. Mol. Biol. Educ., 34: 125–128. doi: 10.1002/bmb.2006.49403402125
- Issue published online: 3 NOV 2006
- Article first published online: 3 NOV 2006
- Manuscript Revised: 2 DEC 2005
- Manuscript Received: 2 NOV 2004
- Metabolic enzymes;
- cytochrome c oxidase;
- lactate dehydrogenase;
- bird pectoral muscle
The main objective of this class experiment is to measure the activity of two metabolic enzymes in crude extract from bird pectoral muscle and to relate the differences to their mode of locomotion and ecology. The laboratory is adapted to stimulate the interest of wildlife management students to biochemistry. The enzymatic activities of cytochrome c oxidase and lactate dehydrogenase are measured in pectoral muscle of black duck and ring-necked pheasant. The black ducks have a high cytochrome c oxidase/lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) ratio, which reflects high aerobic capacity required for sustained and long distance flight. The low cytochrome c oxidase/LDH ratio in ring-necked pheasants and high level of LDH activity suggest that this bird can only support short bursts of flight, which may be related to his strategy of predator avoidance.