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J Infect Dis. 1990 Feb;161(2):242-9.

The role of formylpeptide receptors, C5a receptors, and cytosolic-free calcium in neutrophil priming.

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Department of Medicine, University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland.


Polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNL) exposed to chemoattractants or cytokines change their functional capacity. The effect of endotoxin-activated serum as a priming agent on human PMNL was tested. Pretreatment of PMNL with endotoxin-activated serum increased their oxidative burst in response to formylpeptide (FMLP) (P less than .02) and C5a (P less than .05). Priming for membrane depolarization was observed in PMNL preincubated with either endotoxin-activated serum, low concentrations of purified C5a, or endotoxin but not with decomplemented plasma. Primed PMNL had an increased number of FMLP but not C5a receptors as compared with control PMNL. The "resting" cytosolic free calcium was increased in primed PMNL (P less than .02). Intracellular calcium buffering abolished the priming effect of endotoxin-activated serum. Thus, endotoxin-activated serum can prime cellular responsiveness for membrane depolarization and superoxide production in response to FMLP and to C5a. Priming may be due to an increased resting cytosolic-free calcium.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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