Meeting Abstract

S7-2.3  Friday, Jan. 6  Modeling many molecular motors mostly motivated by moth movement DANIEL, TL*; WILLIAMS, CD; Univ. Washington; Univ. Washington

All animal movement is mediated by the action of muscles comprised of millions of motor molecules suspended in an elastic network of filaments. Over the past decade, substantial modeling efforts, combined with experiments, have shown how single motor molecules collectively contribute to whole cell behavior: myofilament lattice spacing, motor molecule geometry, and molecular kinetics all conspire to determine the temporal dynamics of force generation. At the same time, there has also been considerable attention aimed at integrating cell- and tissue-level aspects of contraction (e.g. length-tension or force-velocity behaviors) to models of limb or whole animal movement. Connections between these two scales of analysis are rare. We have developed spatially explicit models of myosin force generation. These models seek to reveal how molecular scale processes determine tissue and appendage level performance. We use a combination of work loop studies and x-ray diffractometry of the flight muscles of Manduca sexta to test these models and explore the consequences of ultrastructure and molecular mechanics to muscle force generation.