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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 1986 Aug 29;139(1):222-7.

Differential cytolysis of murine spleen, bone-marrow and leukemia cells by melittin reveals differences in membrane topography.


L1210 leukemia cells are 2-4 fold more sensitive to the cytolytic effects of melittin, the membrane-active toxin of bee venom, than normal DBA/2 mouse spleen and bone-marrow cells. Lysis of the normal cells was abolished when either 75 mM galactosamine, glucosamine or 100 microM beta-lactoglobulin was added to the melittin-cell reaction, but lysis of the leukemia cells was unaffected. The amino-groups appeared necessary for blocking melittin-mediated lysis since glucose, galactose and the N-acetyl derivatives were not inhibitory. Bone-marrow cells were more readily protected from lysis than spleen cells. Since melittin-inhibitor complexes were not detected by gel chromatography and the inhibitor could be added to the cell suspension after melittin, the evidence suggests that bone-marrow cells are rich in membrane binding sites for carbohydrates that decrease in mature spleen cells and are virtually absent after neoplastic transformation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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