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Involvement of bivalent cations and arachidonic acid in neutrophil aggregation


Chemotactic factors and arachidonic acid aggregate neutrophils; indomethacin and 5,8,11,14-eicosatetraynoic acid, two blockers of cellular arachidonate metabolism, inhibit these responses. Additionally, A23187, an ionophore which specifically transports bivalent cations into cells, also aggregates the neutrophils, and this response, as well as the response to chemotactic factors, requires the presence of extracellular calcium and magnesium. In this report these relationships were further studied. It was found that human neutrophil aggregation stimulated by arachidonic acid also required calcium and magnesium. Furthermore, cells preincubated with arachidonate for 4 min before exposure to the bivalent cations did not aggregate before or after this exposure and, following this exposure, were refractory to subsequent stimulation by more arachidonate, a chemotactic tripeptide (formylmethionylleucylphenylalanine), or A23187, i.e., these cells had become nonselectively desensitized to the aggregating agents. Finally, indomethacin and 5,8,11,14-eicoasatetraynoic acid inhibited the aggregation response stimulated by A23187 and their potency in doing so paralleled their potency in inhibiting the responses induced by arachidonate or the chemotactic tripeptide. Thus, the neutrophil aggregation responses induced by arachidonate, chemotactic factor, and A23187 were similarly influenced by preincubating the cells with arachidonate, had similar requirements for calcium and magnesium, and were similarly inhibited by blockers of arachidonate metabolism. It appears that bivalent cations and arachidonic acid play essential and, perhaps, interacting roles in the aggregation response to diverse stimuli.

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Publication 1877 of the Research Institute of Scripps Clinic, La Jolla, California 92037.

Supported by research grants: A1 07007 (NIH); Office of Naval Research; Council for Tobacco Research.

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O'Flaherty, J.T. Involvement of bivalent cations and arachidonic acid in neutrophil aggregation. Inflammation 4, 181–194 (1980).

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  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Internal Medicine
  • Arachidonic Acid
  • Indomethacin