The Authors studied the morphology and the biomechanics of the popliteus muscle in the sheep. The dissection showed as the popliteus muscle originates with a sturdy tendon from the lateral femoral condyle, in a cranial position regarding the spin axis of the lateral condyle; moreover the muscle belly has connective layers on which are inserted muscular fibers that have different courses. Biomechanic apprisals seems to exclude a flexor function of the popliteus muscle in the sheep; the stabiliz¬ing function of the knee joint would be primary. The internal rotation of the tibia on the femur, during the flexion of the knee, moreover, would be due to an exclusively passive action as documented from the tendon tension of the popliteus muscle during the mechanically induced flexion and from the reduction of the internal rotation after the complete tendon resection.
Morphology and biomechanics of the sheep (Ovis aries) popliteus muscle: preliminary observations / A. Palumbo Piccionello; L. Bo Minelli; F. Gazza; M. Botti; A. Volta; R. Panu; M. Del Bue. - In: ANNALI DELLA FACOLTÀ DI MEDICINA VETERINARIA. UNIVERSITÀ DI PARMA. - ISSN 0393-4802. - XXVI(2006), pp. 111-118.