Biochimica et biophysica acta

Rat mast cells permeabilised with streptolysin O secrete histamine in response to Ca2+ at concentrations buffered in the micromolar range.

PMID 2434136


Rat peritoneal mast cells have been permeabilised by treatment with streptolysin O which generates membrane lesions of macromolecular dimensions. In the presence of Ca2+ buffered at concentrations in the micromolar range, the permeabilised mast cells release histamine, beta-N-acetylglucosaminidase and lactate dehydrogenase. Release of the two secretory components (but not lactate dehydrogenase) has an obligatory requirement for a nucleoside triphosphate and micromolar concentrations of Ca2+. Inosine triphosphate (ITP) supports the release reaction better than ATP does. It is concluded that the secretory materials are released from the cells by an exocytotic mechanism, while lactate dehydrogenase leaks from the cells through the toxin-generated lesions. By initially withholding and then supplying Ca2+ to the permeabilised cells, it is shown that the exocytotic secretory reaction can persist even when the cytosol is depleted of the bulk of soluble proteins. The streptolysin O treated mast cell preparation represents a simplified system with which to study the mechanism of exocytosis.