Covalent binding to alpha-macroglobulins of a protein with free SH groups produced by activated B cells: blocking by D-penicillamine and gold compounds

Molecular Immunology
C SchlesingerM Teodorescu


alpha 2-Macroglobulin (alpha 2M) complexed with proteinases or modified by the action of amines has been shown to affect immune responses in vitro, though as yet the mechanisms are poorly understood. Supernates from rabbit lymphoid cells cultured in medium with normal rabbit serum and 35S-methionine (or 14C-leucine) were found to contain intensely radiolabeled alpha-macroglobulins (alpha M) (alpha 1 and alpha 2) on electrophoresis. When human alpha 2 M, instead of rabbit serum, was added to cultures, it also appeared radiolabeled, suggesting that lymphocyte-produced proteins (LyP) formed complexes with serum alpha M. These alpha M-associated LyP were produced in greater quantity when lymphocytes were cultured in the presence of mitogens; they were not produced by cells cultured in the presence of cycloheximide; they were produced primarily by B cells rather than T cells or macrophages. Pretreatment of serum or alpha M with methylamine, enhanced rather than inhibited the formation of LyP-alpha M complexes, a finding which is contrary to that expected if the LyP were a proteinase. Since this methylamine treatment of alpha M also results in the generation of free SH groups from the internal thioester bonds of alpha M, the formatio...Continue Reading


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