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Cell Immunol. 1988 Jul;114(2):231-45.

Beta-adrenergic receptors on murine lymphocytes: density varies with cell maturity and lymphocyte subtype and is decreased after antigen administration.

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Department of Life Sciences, Indiana State University, Terre Haute 47809.


beta-Adrenergic receptors were assayed on intact, viable, murine splenocytes and thymocytes using the labeled adrenergic antagonists [3H]-dihydroalprenolol l-[ring propyl-3H(N)] ([3H]DHA) and 4-(3-t-butylamino-2-hydroxypropoxy)-[5,7-3H]benzimidazol-2-one ([3H]CGP 12177). The sites detected by [3H]DHA did not always possess the characteristics of beta-adrenergic receptors and were demonstrated to be stereospecific only after the addition of the binding assay. Populations of cells from C57Bl/6 inbred and CF1 outbred mice were compared. Purified T cells from C57Bl/6 mice had fewer receptors than did either whole spleen or B cells. Thymocytes from either strain had significantly fewer receptors than did the other lymphocyte populations. However, mature medullary thymocytes purified from C57Bl/6 mice had higher numbers of receptors per cell which were comparable to those of the splenic T cell. Radiation-resistant splenocytes recovered from CF1 mice 24 hr after 700 rad of irradiation possessed greatly increased numbers of receptors per cell. Immunization with sheep red blood cells caused a significant reduction in the density of receptors on splenocytes from C57Bl/6 mice. The wide variations observed in the density of beta-adrenergic receptors, possibly related to cell maturity or state of activation, seem to provide opportunities for differential modulation of cell functions by either endogenous or exogenous adrenergic agents.

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