Circadian variation and intermuscular correlation of rabbit jaw muscle activity

Thorsten Grünheid, Geerling E.J. Langenbach, Andrej Zentner, Theo M.G.J. Van Eijden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The activation of jaw muscles varies with different tasks and must be coordinated to ensure proper function of the masticatory system. The activation patterns might differ in various muscles or over the time course. In order to evaluate the activation patterns and the intermuscular correlation during normal daily activity the electromyograms (EMG) of the superficial and deep masseter, medial pterygoid and digastric muscles were continuously recorded in rabbits and related to activity levels. Muscle use was assessed as the relative time per hour (duty time) during which predefined levels of the peak-EMG of the day were exceeded. Pearson's correlation of duty times was calculated for 6 muscle pairs at various activity levels. The duty times of the muscles differed significantly at levels exceeding 50% of the peak-EMG. The animals exhibited apparent intraday variations of duty times revealing a circadian covariant pattern of muscle use. These variations, however, were different in each individual animal. The activation of pairs of jaw-closing muscles was more highly correlated than that of pairs consisting of a jaw-closing and a jaw-opening muscle. The mutual dependence of hourly muscle activity among jaw-closers and among jaw-closers and jaw-openers varied with the activity level suggesting that those muscle groups might be independently controlled during non-powerful and powerful motor behaviors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)151-160
Number of pages10
JournalBrain Research
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Nov 16 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Duty time
  • Jaw muscle activity
  • Motor control
  • Rabbit
  • Telemetry

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Circadian variation and intermuscular correlation of rabbit jaw muscle activity'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this