The effects of exogenous guanine nucleotides on the polymerization of actin in human neutrophils were tested in an electropermeabilized cell preparation. Close to 40% permeabilization was achieved with a single electric discharge as measured by nucleic acid staining with ethidium bromide or propidium iodide with minimal (less than 2%) release of the cytoplasmic marker lactate dehydrogenase. In addition, electropermeabilized neutrophils retained their capacity to produce superoxide anions and to sustain a polymerization of actin in response to surface-receptor dependent stimuli such as chemotactic factors. Electropermeabilization produced a rapid and transient permeabilization that allowed the entry of guanine nucleotides into the cells. GTP and, to a larger extent, its nonhydrolyzable analog guanosine 5'-O-2-thiotriphosphate (GTP[S]), induced a time- and concentration-dependent polymerization of actin, as determined by increased staining with 7-nitrobenz-2-oxa-1,3-diazolylphallacidin. The effects of the aforementioned guanine nucleotides were antagonized by GDP[S], but were insensitive to pertussis toxin. Cholera toxin potentiated to a small degree the amount of actin polymerization induced by GTP[S]. These results provided direct evidence for the involvement of GTP-binding proteins in the regulation of the organization of the cytoskeleton of neutrophils, an event that is of crucial importance to the performance of the defense-oriented functions of these cells.

This content is only available as a PDF.