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J Invest Dermatol. 1985 Oct;85(4):289-94.

Lamellar body-enriched fractions from neonatal mice: preparative techniques and partial characterization.


Several problems have frustrated the isolation of lamellar bodies (LB) from mammalian epidermis. We obtained pellets enriched in intact LB by utilizing the staphylococcal epidermolytic toxin to provide intact, outer epidermal sheets, by controlled homogenization in a cell disrupter, and by passage of homogenates through a graded series of nuclepore filters (Science 221:962, 1983). Such preparations contained more intact LB than did fractions prepared by a variety of differential or sucrose/metrizamide discontinuous centrifugation methods. Initial characterization of the enzymatic content of this fraction revealed it to be enriched in certain hydrolytic enzymes (acid phosphatase, carboxypeptidase, cathepsin B, acid lipase, sphingomyelinase, and phospholipase A), but strikingly depleted in all sulfatases, beta-glucuronidase, and the non-lysosomal protease, plasminogen activator. Thus, LB show some properties of lysosomes, although certain characteristic lysosomal enzymes are strikingly absent. Lamellar body fractions contained 2-3 times more lipid per unit weight than did homogenates, and were enriched in phospholipids, free sterols, and glycosphingolipids, but not in other neutral lipids or ceramides. In summary, whereas some of the enzymes in LB could participate in the metabolism of LB lipid precursors to hydrophobic barrier constituents, others may attack intercellular constituents, ultimately resulting in desquamation. The lipid profile of these organelles suggests that they deliver precursors of permeability barrier lipids to intercellular domains.

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