Mechanism of lymphocyte activation. II. Requirements for macromolecular synthesis in the production of lymphokines

L. Varesio, H. T. Holden, D. Taramelli

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Reversible inhibitors of protein synthesis, cycloheximide and puromycin, and an irreversible inhibitor of RNA synthesis, actinomycin D, were employed to study the kinetics and types of macromolecular synthetic events required for the production of migration inhibitory factor (MIF) and macrophage activating factor (MAF) by Con A-stimulated lymphocytes. Reversible inhibition of protein synthesis during the first 2 hr of stimulation completely inhibited MIF and MAF production. The same treatment, performed 4 hr after the beginning of the stimulation, had no effect. When the inhibitors of protein synthesis were left in the cultures, a block of lymphokine production was observed when the drugs were added at 6 hr as well as at time 0. In contrast, irreversible inhibition of RNA synthesis at 6 hr was ineffective and only treatment at the beginning of culture blocked lymphokine production. These data suggest that a critical protein is synthesized during the first few hours of stimulation, which is required for subsequent production of lymphokines. After this special early requirement, however, continued protein synthesis is needed for lymphokine production. In contrast, the RNA required for MIF and MAF production seemed to be completely synthesized within 4 to 6 hr of stimulation. The possibility that suppressor macrophages inhibit lymphokine production via modulation of macromolecular synthesis is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2810-2817
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1980

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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