Localization of eosinophil-derived neurotoxin and eosinophil cationic protein in neutrophilic leukocytes

Sanjiv Sur, Dohn G. Glitz, Hirohito Kita, Stephen M. Kujawa, Ellen A. Peterson, Deborah A. Weiler, Gail M. Kephart, Jill M. Wagner, Terry J. George, Gerald J. Gleich, Kristin M. Leiferman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

124 Scopus citations


Eosinophil-derived neurotoxin (EDN) and eosinophil cationic protein (ECP) are generally regarded as eosinophil-specific proteins. We tested whether EDN and ECP are present in mature neutrophils. By indirect immunofluorescence, both eosinophils and neutrophils stained with antibodies to EDN and ECP. Lysates of purified (<0.1% eosinophil contamination) neutrophils contained EDN, 112 ± 4 ng/106 cells, and ECP, 163 ± 2 ng/106 cells, whereas eosinophil major basic protein (MBP) was not detectable. Electron microscopic examination of immunogold-labeled buffy coat cells stained with EDN antibody showed that EDN is localized to neutrophil granules. Finally, EDN mRNA was detected in lysates of highly purified neutrophils (0.001% eosinophil contamination) by the reverse transcription- polymerase chain reaction. We conclude that proteins that are either identical to or immunologically cross-reactive with EDN and ECP are present in neutrophils and that EDN is synthesized and localized to neutrophil granules. Thus, caution must be exercised in interpreting the presence of EDN and ECP as specific markers of eosinophil-associated inflammation in human disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)715-722
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Leukocyte Biology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Electron microscopy
  • Immunofluorescence
  • Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology
  • Cell Biology


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