The Alterations in Adenosine Nucleotides andLactic Acid Levels in Striated MusclesFollowing Death with Cervical Dislocation orElectric Shock

Authors: Halime Hanim Pençe *;  Sadrettin Pençe **;  Naciye Kurtul *;  Ebubekir Bakan *;  Ahmet Nezih Kök ***;  Hasan Kocoglu ****
Authors‘ workplace: Atatürk University, Medical School, Department of Biochemistry, Erzurum/Turkey **Gaziantep University, Medical School, Department of Physiology, Gaziantep/Turkey ***Atatürk University, Medical School, Department of Forensic Medicine, Erzurum/Turkey ****Ga *
Published in: Čes.-slov. Patol., , 2003, No. 1, p. 8-11


In this study, changes in adenosine triphosphate (ATP), adenosine diphosphate (ADP), adenosinemonophosphate (AMP) and lactic acid levels in masseter, triceps, and quadriceps muscles obtainedfrom right and left sides of Spraque-Dawley rats following two different types of death wereinvestigated. The samples were taken immediately and 120 minutes after death occurred either bycervical dislocation or electric shock.ATP concentrations in the muscles of masseter, triceps, and quadriceps were lower in samplesobtained 120 minutes after death than that of samples obtained immediately after death. ADP,AMP, and lactic acid concentrations in these muscles were higher in samples obtained 120 minutesafter death than those obtained immediately after death. A positive linear correlation wasdetermined between ATP and ADP concentrations in quadriceps muscles of the rats killed withcervical dislocation and in masseter muscles of the rats killed with electric shock. When the ratskilled with cervical dislocation and with electric shock were compared, ADP, AMP, and lactic acidconcentrations were lower in the former than in the latter for both times (immediately and 120minutes after death occurred). In the case of electric shock, ATP is consumed faster because ofimmediate contractions during death, resulting in a faster rigor mortis. This finding was confirmedwith higher lactic acid levels in muscles of the rats killed with electric shock than the othergroup.In the cervical dislocation and electric shock group rats, ATP decreased in different levels in thethree different muscle types mentioned above, being much decline in masseter in cervical dislocationand in quadriceps in electric shock group. This may be caused by low mass and less glycogenstorage of masseter and by near localisation of electrode to quadriceps. One can conclude that theoccurrence of rigor mortis is closely related to the mode of death.

Key words:
Adenosine nucleotides – Electric shock – Lactic acid – Rigor mortis

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Anatomical pathology Forensic medical examiner Toxicology

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Czecho-Slovak Pathology

2003 Issue 1

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