In mouse-human heterokaryons, the lateral diffusion of major histocompatibility (MHC) antigens in the plasma membrane is enhanced by treatment of parent cells with ouabain. Ouabain treatment is ineffective if the medium lacks calcium ion, or if Verapamil, a blocker of calcium channels, is present. The divalent ionophore A23187 also enhances lateral diffusion of MHC antigens, to the same extent as ouabain, A23187 is effective only if calcium is present in the medium. Thus it appears that increased levels of cell calcium release constraints to lateral diffusion of MHC antigens.

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