Modelling the isometric force response to multiple pulse stimuli in locust skeletal muscle
An improved model of locust skeletal muscle will inform on the general behaviour of invertebrate and mammalian muscle with the eventual aim of improving biomedical models of human muscles, embracing prosthetic construction and muscle therapy. In this article, the isometric response of the locust hind leg extensor muscle to input pulse trains is investigated. Experimental data was collected by stimulating the muscle directly and measuring the force at the tibia. The responses to constant frequency stimulus trains of various frequencies and number of pulses were decomposed into the response to each individual stimulus. Each individual pulse response was then fitted to a model, it being assumed that the response to each pulse could be approximated as an impulse response and was linear, no assumption were made about the model order. When the interpulse frequency (IPF) was low and the number of pulses in the train small, a second-order model provided a good fit to each pulse. For moderate IPF or for long pulse trains a linear third-order model provided a better fit to the response to each pulse. The fit using a second-order model deteriorated with increasing IPF. When the input comprised higher IPFs with a large number of pulses the assumptions that the response was linear could not be confirmed. A generalised model is also presented. This model is second-order, and contains two nonlinear terms. The model is able to capture the force response to a range of inputs. This includes cases where the input comprised of higher frequency pulse trains and the assumption of quasi-linear behaviour could not be confirmed.
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