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Motor unit firing pattern of vastus lateralis muscle in type 2 diabetes mellitus patients


  • This study was supported in part by a Grant-in-Aid from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (No. 22-1944).


Introduction: We investigated the motor unit (MU) firing pattern in type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) patients by means of multichannel surface electromyography (SEMG). Methods: Eight T2DM patients and 8 age-matched, healthy men performed a ramp-up contraction to 20% of maximal voluntary contraction (MVC). They also performed a sustained contraction at 10% of MVC during isometric knee extension. Multichannel SEMG signals recorded from the vastus lateralis muscle were decomposed with the convolution kernel compensation technique to extract individual MU firing patterns. Results: During the ramp contraction, the extent of MU firing modulation was significantly attenuated in T2DM. Variability of MU firing rate was significantly higher in T2DM at later periods during the sustained contraction. Conclusions: Our findings suggest that T2DM patients manifest characteristic MU activity patterns due possibly to some degree of neuromuscular impairment affecting the integrity of MU firing modulation. Muscle Nerve 48:806–813, 2013