The M band can be extracted from fibrils suspended in 5 mM Tris buffer, pH 8.0, for 15 min. The M band is completely removed only from fibrils of sarcomere lengths greater than 2.1 µ. Extraction does not alter the fluorescent antimyosin staining pattern of the A band, thus providing strong evidence that no alteration of the structural integrity of the thick filament has occurred. Fluorescent antibody staining of the M band of unextracted fibrils can be prevented specifically by absorbing the fluorescent antibody with extracted M band material prior to staining. This verifies the specificity of the extraction procedure.

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