Human protectin (CD59) is an 18-20-kD membrane glycoprotein that restricts lysis of human erythrocytes and leukocytes by homologous complement. By directly incorporating protectin into membranes of heterologous cells we observed that protectin did not prevent perforin-mediated killing, whereas complement killing was effectively restricted. Further, no significant enhancement of cell-mediated killing or target killing by purified perforin was observed with anti-protectin antibodies. Thus, in contrast with complement lysis, restriction of lysis by protectin does not apply to cell-mediated killing.

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