1. Kidney homogenates from rats injected with egg white and from control rats were fractionated simultaneously into six fractions and the content of acid phosphatase, ribonuclease, desoxyribonuclease, cathepsin, and ß-glucuronidase in corresponding fractions from treated and untreated animals was compared. These observations were correlated with the amount of dark brown bottom sediments in fractions NDrI, DrII, and DrIII, and with the number of droplets in fraction NDrI.
2. It was found that after injection of egg white the amount of small droplets decreased as indicated by the decrease of the dark brown bottom layer in the sediment of fraction DrIII and by the concomitant decrease of hydrolytic enzymes in the same fraction, and that the number of large droplets increased as indicated by the increase of brown sediment in fraction NDrI and the increase in the number of droplets counted in a bacterial counting chamber in the same fraction. It was concluded that the treatment with egg white induced the transformation of small droplets into large droplets.
3. The decrease of hydrolytic enzymes in the fractions containing the small droplets was accompanied by a marked increase of these enzymes in the supernatant fluid. The enzyme content of fraction NDrI was not increased after treatment, although it contained greatly increased numbers of large droplets. Counting of the droplets in this fraction showed decreased enzymatic activity of the average large droplet after treatment with egg white. It was suggested that during the transformation of small into large droplets, a portion of the hydrolytic enzymes was released into the surrounding cytoplasm, and that this was partly responsible for the increased enzyme content of the supernatant fluid after fractionation of the kidney homogenate. In contrast to the four other hydrolytic enzymes, ß-glucuronidase was not increased in the supernatant fluid.
4. Eighteen hours after intraperitoneal injection of egg white, the specific enzymatic activities of kidney homogenates showed a 25 to 35 per cent increase for cathepsin, ribonuclease, and desoxyribonuclease, no change for acid phosphatase and ß-glucuronidase, and approximately a 7 per cent decrease for cytochrome oxidase. The increase of cathepsin, ribonuclease, and desoxyribonuclease in the total homogenate was interpreted as an indication of the formation of new enzymes, and it was suggested that this partly accounted for the increase of these enzymes in the supernatant fluid.
5. The activation of the enzymes by osmotic effects was investigated in vitro by incubation of droplet fractions in the presence of different concentrations of sucrose.