Claus Munck Petersen

Immunosuppressive properties of electrophoretically "slow" and "fast" form alpha 2-macroglobulin. Effects on cell-mediated cytotoxicity and (allo-) antigen-induced T cell proliferation

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Lymphokine activated killer cell lysis of K562 cells was inhibited by alpha 2-macroglobulin (alpha 2M), soybean trypsin inhibitor, and alpha 1-proteinase inhibitor. In serum free medium 2 mg/ml alpha 2M suppressed target cell lysis in a 4-h cytotoxic assay with about 40%. Suppression was dose and time dependent. Cytotoxicity was unaffected by alpha 2M concentrations less than 0.25 mg/ml, and by alpha 2M added later than 1.5 h from start of assay. Pre-treatment of effector (but not of target) cells with alpha 2M was even more suppressive than the presence of alpha 2M during assay. Cell-mediated cytotoxicity was not inhibited by alpha 2M treated with methylamine or by various alpha 2M-proteinase complexes. In contrast, alpha 2M-proteinase complex as well as native alpha 2M suppressed the proliferation of Ag-activated T cells. However, methylamine-treated alpha 2M did not inhibit T cell proliferation, and suppression by alpha 2M-proteinase complex was significantly reduced after inhibition of the alpha 2M-bound proteinase. On incubation at 4 degrees C with lymphokine-activated killer cells, alpha 2M reacted with cell associated proteinases and changed from electrophoretically "slow" to "fast" form. Cell associated proteinases bound by alpha 2M showed chymotrypsin- and trypsin-like specificities and their activity surpassed activity caused by cellular leakage and secretion. The present results strongly indicate that alpha 2M mediates immunosuppression in its capacity as a proteinase inhibitor and suggest inhibition of (T)cell surface-associated proteinases as a possible mode of suppression.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Immunology
Pages (from-to)629-635
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 1989

    Research areas

  • Cytotoxicity Tests, Immunologic, Cytotoxicity, Immunologic, Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel, Humans, Immunity, Cellular, Immunosuppressive Agents, Isoantigens, Kinetics, Lymphocyte Activation, Macromolecular Substances, Peptide Hydrolases, Protein Conformation, Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate, Structure-Activity Relationship, T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic, alpha-Macroglobulins

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