BHK 21 cells can adhere to a protein-coated plastic dish in the presence of Ca2+ at temperatures above 12 degrees C. However, they cannot adhere below 8 degrees C. The ESR spectrum of cells spin-labeled with a stearic acid label indicated that the membrane fluidity changed characteristically at 10 degrees C, 20 degrees C, and 30 degrees C. The critical temperature for cell adhesion coincided well with one of the characteristic temperatures for the membrane fluidity change. In the case of adhesion in the presence of Mg2+, no such correlation was observed.

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