Briefly describe striated and smooth muscles with their functions.
The striated muscle fibres are long or elongated, non-tapering, cylindrical and unbranched. These cells have a number of nuclei called sarcolemma.These muscle fibres shows alternate dark and light stripes or striations and so they are called as striated muscles. These muscles occur in muscles of limbs, body wall, face, neck, etc.
Functions of striated muscles:
- Striated muscles are powerful and undergo rapid contraction and expansion.
- Striated muscles provide the force for locomotion and all other voluntary movements of the body.
The smooth muscles are also known as unstriated or involuntary muscles. Smooth muscles occur as bundles or sheets of elongated fusiform or spindle-shaped cells or fibres. They are held together by loose connective tissue. These muscle fibres are uninucleate and do not bear any bands, stripes or striation across them.
These muscles are found in the walls of the alimentary canal and internal organs, ducts of glands and blood vessels. Smooth muscles are also found in the stomach, intestine, ureters, bronchi, iris of the eye, etc.
Functions of smooth muscles:
- Smooth muscles do not work according to our will, so they are also called involuntary muscles. Movement of food in the alimentary canal or the contraction and relaxation of blood vessels are involuntary movements.
- Smooth muscles contract slowly but can remain contracted for a long period of time. Due to this characteristic, the food passes to the next step of digestion in the alimentary canal.