Previous studies with the lymphokine, histamine-releasing activity (HRA), showed that HRA consisted of a heterogeneous group of molecules. The possibility of using thoracic duct lymphocytes (TDL) as a source of large quantities of HRA has been investigated. Antigen-stimulated TDL synthesize and release HRA in quantities similar to an equivalent number of peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBL). Streptokinase (SK) antigen routinely caused TDL to produce HRA ~ 15,000 Da. In contrast, staphylococcus enterotoxin B (SEB) induced the formation of a heterogeneous mixture of HRAs with apparent molecular weights of 50,000 and 15,000. Two peaks of activity (HRA I and II) were recovered when the supernatant from SK-stimulated TDL was subjected to ion-exchange chromatography. Interestingly, basophil chemotactic activity (BCA) was also eluted in these two peaks. Although interferon (IFN) is also released by antigen-stimulated TDL, the nonidentity of IFN and HRA was established by fundamental differences in Chromatographic properties and specific antisera to IFN. In contrast, these studies suggest that HRA and BCA may be present on the same molecular entity.
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