Protein kinase activity has been detected associated with the outer surface of guinea pig peritoneal macrophages. Macrophages incubated with [gamma-32P]ATP incorporated 32P-phosphate into cell-associated proteins. Inorganic phosphate did not compete, nor could inorganic [32P]phosphate substitute as the phosphate donor, demonstrating that transfer of phosphate from ATP to protein is direct and extracellular. The macrophage-associated protein kinase was also shown to phosphorylate added acceptor protein (histone) and to be tightly associated with the cell surface. Thus, a new ectoenzyme, a protein kinase, has been detected in macrophages.

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