Axenic Tetrahymena pyriformis, syngen 1, mating type II cells were grown in Cox's defined medium. When washed and transferred into nonnutrient dilute salt solution or resuspended in the defined medium, the intact cells secrete acid hydrolases into the medium. Cells starving in the salt solution release in 5 hr about two-thirds of their ß-glucosidase, ß-N-acetylglucosaminidase, α-glucosidase, and amylase activities, about one-third of their deoxyribonuclease and phosphatase activities, smaller amounts of ribonuclease, and only a negligible fraction of their proteinase activity and protein content. During this period there is practically no change in the enzyme activities (except for a sudden increase of ribonuclease activity) and protein content of cells and medium together. Cells resuspended in the nutrient medium secrete enzymes as do the starved cells, but replace this loss, so that there is a continuous increase of the activities in the total system. According to isopycnic centrifugation experiments performed in sucrose gradients, the source of the hydrolases is a special population of lysosomes which disappear from the cells during starvation. This population equilibrates in the high density region of the gradients and contains the various acid hydrolases in about the proportion in which these enzymes appear in the medium.

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