A cAMP-regulated chloride channel in lymphocytes that is affected in cystic fibrosis

Science  03 Feb 1989:
Vol. 243, Issue 4891, pp. 657-660
DOI: 10.1126/science.2464852


A defect in regulation of a chloride channel appears to be the molecular basis for cystic fibrosis (CF), a common lethal genetic disease. It is shown here that a chloride channel with kinetic and regulatory properties similar to those described for secretory epithelial cells is present in both T and B lymphocyte cell lines. The regulation of the channels by adenosine 3',5'-monophosphate (cAMP)-dependent protein kinase in transformed B cells from CF patients is defective. Thus, lymphocytes may be an accessible source of CF tissue for study of this defect, for cloning of the chloride channel complex, and for diagnosis of the disease.