Leukotriene (LT) synthesis is initiated by the enzyme 5-lipoxygenase (5-LO). Prolonged cell stimulation causes the translocation of 5-LO to the nuclear envelope and the synthesis of LT, with subsequent inactivation and persistent membrane association of 5-LO. In this study, we examined whether persistent membrane association of 5-LO, as well as the inactivation of 5-LO, could be prevented by shortening the length of cell stimulation or by blocking LT synthesis. As expected, stimulation of rat basophilic leukaemia (RBL) cells, a mast cell model, or alveolar macrophages (AMs) with calcium ionophore for 15 min caused 5-LO translocation, LT generation and the inactivation and persistent membrane association of 5-LO. When RBL cells or AMs instead were stimulated for 0.5-5 min, translocation of 5-LO and synthesis of LT still occurred. However, after washing and resting, the 5-LO enzyme returned to its original intracellular distribution. Furthermore these cells showed a retained capacity for LT synthesis on subsequent re-stimulation. Similar results were obtained when cells were stimulated with either formyl peptide or zymosan, instead of ionophore. In contrast, blockade of LT synthesis during the initial stimulation, with the selective inhibitors zileuton or MK-886, did not inhibit 5-LO translocation, inactivation or persistent membrane association resulting from prolonged cell stimulation. We conclude that, in long-lived immune cells, 5-LO translocation is reversible when cell stimulation is short, but persistent after prolonged stimulation. In addition 5-LO remains active and LT synthetic capacity is retained after transient stimulation, whereas significant inactivation of 5-LO occurs after prolonged stimulation. Finally, results with LT synthesis inhibitors indicate that inactivation and persistent membrane association of 5-LO can result independently of 5-LO activation.

This content is only available as a PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.