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J Clin Invest. 1971 Aug;50(8):1745-7.

Isolation and properties of phagocytic vesicles from polymorphonuclear leukocytes.


A method for the isolation of intact phagocytic vesicles from guinea pig peritoneal-exudate granulocytes and human peripheral-blood leukocytes is presented. After leukocytes ingested the particles of a stable emulsion of paraffin oil, the uningested emulsion was washed away and the cells were homogenized. The homogenate was placed in the middle of a three-step discontinuous sucrose gradient and centrifuged for 1 hr at 100,000 g. The phagocytic vesicles, containing the low density paraffin-oil particles, were simultaneously washed and collected by floatation, while the other organelles, chiefly granules, sedimented through the lower wash layer, and the particle-free supernatant remained in the middle of the gradient. Emulsion particles stained with Oil Red O were employed to assay the rate of phagocytosis and to mark the location of the particles in subcellular fractions. The dye was extracted from washed cells or cell fractions with dioxane and colorimetrically quantified. The purity of phagocytic vesicles obtained by this method was assessed by electron microscopy, chemical analysis, and assay of enzyme composition. Granule-associated enzymes, acid phosphatase, alkaline phosphatase, beta-glucuronidase, and peroxidase were present in the phagocytic vesicles and originated from the granules. Cyanide-resistant NADH (reduced form of diphosphopyridine nucleotide) oxidase was also found. Enzymes associated with the vesicles exhibited latency to Triton X-100. Uptake of particles and the transfer of total protein and phospholipid into phagocytic vesicles occurred simultaneously Accumulation of acid and alkaline phosphatase in the vesicles continued until phagocytosis ceased. Peroxidase, NADH oxidase, and beta-glucuronidase activities in the phagocytic vesicles, on the other hand, were maximal by 30 min and increased little thereafter even when phagocytosis was still going on.

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