sarcomere

noun
sar·​co·​mere | \ ˈsär-kə-ˌmir How to pronounce sarcomere (audio) \
plural sarcomeres

Definition of sarcomere

: any of the repeating, contractile, structural subunits of striated muscle cells (as of skeletal or cardiac muscle) that are composed of the protein filaments actin and myosin Basically, during contraction a sarcomere shortens like a collapsing telescope, as the actin filaments at each end of a central myosin filament slide toward the myosin's center.— Jesper L. Andersen et al. — see z line

Examples of sarcomere in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web More myofibrils will increase the mass of a muscle cell while more sarcomeres will increase the length. Popular Science, "Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about muscles," 1 Jan. 2019 Our bodies rebuild these tears by adding either sarcomeres, which are fibrous proteins inside muscle cells, or myofibrils—chains of rod-like units also in muscle cells that give them their striped appearance. Popular Science, "Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about muscles," 1 Jan. 2019 The basic functional units of muscle tissue are called sarcomeres. Alexa Tucker, SELF, "Everything You Need to Know About Whether You Should Actually Bother Stretching," 19 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'sarcomere.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of sarcomere

1891, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for sarcomere

sarco- + -mere

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about sarcomere

Time Traveler for sarcomere

Time Traveler

The first known use of sarcomere was in 1891

See more words from the same year

Statistics for sarcomere

Last Updated

20 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Sarcomere.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sarcomere. Accessed 21 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for sarcomere

sarcomere

noun
sar·​co·​mere | \ ˈsär-kə-ˌmi(ə)r How to pronounce sarcomere (audio) \

Medical Definition of sarcomere

: any of the repeating, contractile, structural subunits of striated muscle cells (as of skeletal or cardiac muscle) that are composed of the protein filaments actin and myosin Skeletal muscle is a unique kind of tissue, made up of long, thin fibers composed of several different proteins. These proteins interlock like Legos inside fibrous compartments called sarcomeres.— Gretchen Reynolds, The New York Times Sports Magazine Basically, during contraction a sarcomere shortens like a collapsing telescope, as the actin filaments at each end of a central myosin filament slide toward the myosin's center.— Jesper L. Andersen et al., Scientific American — see z line

Other Words from sarcomere

sarcomeric \ ˌsär-​kə-​ˈmer-​ik How to pronounce sarcomere (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on sarcomere

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about sarcomere

Comments on sarcomere

What made you want to look up sarcomere? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!