Role of adenosine 5' triphosphate in lymphokine activated (LAK) killing of human tumor cells

P. Correale, M. Giuliano, P. Tagliaferri, R. Guarrasi, M. Caraglia, M. R. Marinetti, T. Iezzi, A. R. Bianco, A. Procopio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper presents evidence that extracellular ATP is a critical factor involved in human LAK cell-mediated cytotoxicity. A correlation between sensitivity to ATP and LAK cells has been found using a panel of human carcinoma and melanoma cells. This sensitivity was in parallel modulated by pretreatment with phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA) or verapamil. Degradation of extracellular ATP by apyrase as well as ADP-β-S, a receptorial antagonist of ATP, abrogated ATP- as well as LAK-mediated cytotoxicity. ATP binding sites have been detected by radioreceptor assays with ADP-β-35S on the cell surface of LAK and ATP sensitive cancer cells. The cytotoxic receptor has been characterized as P2x purine-receptors by a panel of synthetic nucleotides. No nucleotide receptor was detected on the LAK and ATP-resistant cancer cells. These results demonstrate that extracellular ATP is needed for an efficient LAK cell-mediated cytotoxicity and suggest the involvement of P2x receptors in the mechanisms of cell killing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-69
Number of pages3
JournalResearch Communications in Molecular Pathology and Pharmacology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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