MCAT Basics Podcast

The Muscular System

This MCAT BAsics episode covers the muscular system. It begins with the differences and similarities between the three types of muscle (smooth, cardiac, and skeletal). Then, the podcast explores the basic structure of a skeletal muscle cell and the various organelles unique to this cell type, including the sarcolemma, sarcoplasm, myofibrils, sarcomeres, and more. Next, it discusses three main differences between Type 1 and Type 2 muscle fibers. Finally, it delves into muscle contraction, starting at the neuromuscular junction and ending with the shortening of sarcomeres, which causes muscle flexion.

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[00:00] Introduction

[02:09] Types of muscle – smooth, cardiac, skeletal

[04:49] The structure of a muscle cell in skeletal muscle

[15:11] The difference between Type 1 and Type 2 muscle fibers

[23:08] Understanding how a muscle contracts

[27:53] The Cross-Bridge cycle

Sam Smith

Sam completed his Bachelors of Science in Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder. Following his graduation, he worked at the National Institutes of Health Vaccine Research Center studying HIV. Meanwhile, with a microphone in his garage, Sam founded the MCAT Basics podcast. The podcast has grown to become the top rated MCAT podcast on iTunes. In addition to podcasting, Sam enjoys the outdoors, sports, and his friends and family.

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