Different types of muscle

There are three main types of muscle in the human body.

These are:

Skeletal Muscle (voluntary muscle)

Cardiac Muscle

Smooth muscle (involuntary muscle)


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Skeletal Muscle.

This type of muscle is a voluntary muscle as its under conscious control. It is also striated (banded). The banding is caused by the actin and myosin. Where the actin and myosin overlap the banding is darker. If actin or myosin is on its own then the banding is lighter. The cells are multinucleate which means there are many nuclei. The purpose of skeletal muscle is to cause movement on limbs. Although skeletal muscle can contract very quickly, it tends to fatigue very quickly.

Cardiac Muscle.

Cardiac muscle is the muscle that makes up the heart. It is myogenic (self contracting). The cardiac muscle again is striated, but this time uninucleate. Also there are intercalated discs between the cells. These discs help to synchronise the muscle contraction. Cardiac muscle doesn’t tend to fatigue easily.

Smooth muscle.

Smooth muscle is present in the walls of arteries or in the walls of the bronchi. It has a slow contraction. Smooth muscle is unstriated. Like cardiac muscle it is also uninucleate.


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