An antigen-antibody reaction occurring in the perfused sensitized guinea pig lung, has been demonstrated to release kallikrein, a proteolytic enzyme related to the formation of kinins. This lung kallikrein is similar to plasma kallikrein in all properties studied, including susceptibility to the same inhibitors, electrophoretic mobility, and heterogeneity in molecular size.
The release of kallikrein during anaphylaxis in the guinea pig lung occurs in the presence of ethylenediaminetetraacetate. Perfusion of ellagic acid into nonsensitized lungs will also release kallikrein, presumably through activation of Hageman factor. On the basis of these findings the hypothesis is suggested that the kallikrein in perfused lung activated by the antigen-antibody reaction is, in fact, plasma kallikrein. It is further suggested that activation of such kallikrein by the antigen-antibody reaction proceeds through Hageman factor.