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J Immunol Methods. 1977;18(3-4):225-34.

Two-step separation of human peripheral blood monocytes on discontinuous density gradients of colloidal silica-polyvinylpyrrolidinone.


Normal human peripheral blood monocytes were purified by a two-step separation. The first step, the standard Ficoll--Hypaque (F--H) buoyant density centrifugation, yielded mainly mononuclear cells, of which 24 +/- 9% were monocytes. Isopycnic centrifugation on discontinuous gradients of colloidal silica polyvinylpyrrolidinone (CS-PVP) further separated these mononuclear cells. The density interface between 1.070 and 1.060 g/ml yielded 82 +/- 7% monocytes, 5 +/- 4% granulocytes and 13 +/- 8% lymphocytes. Sixty-six percent of the monocytes obtained after F--H separation were recovered in this layer. The monocytes were intact and viable and retained their ability to phagocytose and kill Candida pseudotropicalis and to spread on glass coverslips. Motility (both random and towards a chemoattractant) was retained but was quantitatively less than after F--H separation alone. The relative purity of the monocyte population allowed assessment of major histocompatibility surface antigens by serotyping. This confirmed the presence of HLA and Ia-like antigens on monocytes.

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