Stimulation of the respiratory burst of human neutrophils by fMet-Leu-Phe (in the absence of cytochalasin B) is largely unaffected when the activities of protein kinase C and phospholipase D are inhibited. This has been confirmed using three separate assays to measure the respiratory burst. However, whilst these enzymes are not required for the initiation or maximal rate of oxidant generation, they are required to sustain oxidase activity. In contrast, in the presence of cytochalasin B, fMet-Leu-Phe stimulated oxidase activity is much more dependent on phospholipase D activity. It is proposed that (in the absence of cytochalasin B) activation of the NADPH oxidase utilises cytochrome b molecules that are already present on the plasma membrane and activation occurs independently of phospholipase D and protein kinase C. Once these complexes are inactivated, then new cytochrome b molecules must be recruited from sub-cellular stores. This translocation and/or activation of these molecules is phospholipase D dependent. Some support for this model comes from the finding that the translocation of CD11b (which co-localises with cytochrome b) onto the cell surface is phospholipase D dependent.

Abbreviations: GM-CSF, granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor; fMet-Leu-Phe, N-formylmethionyl-leucyl-phenylalanine luminol 5-amino-2,3-dihydro-1,4-phthalazinedione, O2,-superoxide radical

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