Cytotaxins after the sedimentation behavior of human granulocytes

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Science  31 Aug 1979:
Vol. 205, Issue 4409, pp. 936-937
DOI: 10.1126/science.382355


Human granulocytes from the peripheral blood of healthy donors were subjected to transient gravity sedimentation analysis in Ficoll density gradient columns (37 degrees C) containing different concentrations of Escherichia coli endotoxin-activated serum and medium 199. A dramatic serum concentration-dependent dispersion of the cells based on changes in sedimentation velocity was observed as a function of time, using a new optical scanning instrument. The phenomenon was virtually abolished in the presence of cytochalasin B, a known inhibitor of cellular chemotaxis. The width (second statistical moment) of the sedimenting cell distribution increased in a sigmoid fashion as a function of time regardless of cytotaxin concentration. This indicates that a slow and nonlinear response of the granulocytes to the cytotaxins occurs. This new kinetic method should be useful in examining an alternate manifestation of the chemoresponsiveness of phagocytic cells and of cell interactions in general.