Journal of biochemistry

Evidence that NADPH is the actual substrate of the oxidase responsible for the "respiratory burst" of phagocytosing polymorphonuclear leukocytes.

PMID 6874661


The relationship between glucose metabolism and the "respiratory burst" of phagocytosing polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) was studied in a Renex 30-treated cell system of guinea pig PMN by a polarometric technique. Phagocytosing PMN were treated with a detergent (Renex 30) and recovery of respiratory activity was examined by addition of various concentrations of NADP and glucose-6-phosphate (G6P) to determine the availability of endogenously formed NADPH via the hexose monophosphate (HMP) pathway. The oxygen uptake by phagocytosing PMN ceased after the treatment with Renex 30 and was restored by the addition of NADP and G6P. Furthermore, the restoration of oxygen uptake was linearly proportional to the rate of NADPH formation on increase in either NADP or G6P concentration. Resting PMN showed no respiratory activity even in the presence of excess NADP and G6P, in which NADPH was formed at the same rate as in phagocytosing PMN. In a parallel experiment, recovery of respiratory activity was examined in the same system by addition of NAD and glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate (G3P) in that order to clarify whether the respiratory enzyme can utilize NADH formed via the glycolytic pathway. In contrast to the results in the NADPH-forming system, the addition of NAD and G3P induced slight oxygen uptake of Renex 30-treated PMN, but there was no difference in the oxygen uptake between resting and phagocytosis-activated PMN. The results indicated that the primary oxidase responsible for the "respiratory burst" is NADPH oxidase, and that its activity is coupled with glucose oxidation via the HMP pathway without the participation of other metabolic pathways such as glycolysis.