The diazonium salt of sulfanilic acid (DASA) can inactivate about 80% of the total 5'-nucleotidase of viable macrophages. The remaining 20% can be inactivated if the cells are first lysed in detergent, and presumably represents an intracellular pool of 5'-nucleotidase. The bulk of this pool may represent cytoplasmic vesicles derived from plasma membrane by endocytosis. This internal compartment is expanded up to threefold immediately after the cells have ingested a large latex load. This is consistent with previous observations on the internalization of 5'-nucleotidase in latex phagosomes. In latex-filled cells this intracellular pool of enzyme is inactivated over a few hours, and the cells then slowly increase their enzyme activity to nearly normal levels. However, 24 h after latex ingestion the metabolism of 5'-nucleotidase in these recovered cells is abnormal, as the rate of enzyme degradation is about twice the normal rate, and the DASA-insensitive enzyme pool in these cells is strikingly diminished. This may reflect effects of the accumulated indigestible particles on the fate of incoming pinocytic vesicles or on newly synthesized plasma membrane precursor. Another endocytic stimulus, concanavalin A, also reduces the total cell 5'-nucleotidase activity. This effect, which is time and temperature dependent, can be prevented by the competitive sugar alpha-methyl mannose. The concanavalin A inhibition can be reversed in the absence of new protein synthesis or in cells cultivated in serum-free conditions. It is not known whether the effect of concanavalin A on 5'-nucleotidase depends upon the interiorizaiton of plasma membrane or is strictly associated with events at the cell surface.

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