Lymphocyte attachment to high endothelial venules within lymph nodes is mediated by the peripheral lymph node homing receptor (pnHR), originally defined on mouse lymphocytes by the MEL-14 mAb. The pnHR is a calcium-dependent lectin-like receptor, a member of the LEC-CAM family of adhesion proteins. Here, using a soluble recombinant form of the homing receptor, we have identified an endothelial ligand for the pnHR as an approximately 50-kD sulfated, fucosylated, and sialylated glycoprotein, which we designate Sgp50 (sulfated glycoprotein of 50 kD). Recombinant receptor binding to this lymph node-specific glycoprotein requires calcium and is inhibitable by specific carbohydrates and by MEL-14 mAb. Sialylation of the component is required for binding. Additionally, the glycoprotein is precipitated by MECA-79, an adhesion-blocking mAb reactive with lymph node HEV. A related glycoprotein of approximately 90 kD (designated as Sgp90) is also identified.

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