MA158.2, a rat monoclonal antibody with binding specificity for cells of the monocyte-macrophage lineage, reacts with an antigen (158.2) whose expression is enhanced on mononuclear cells activated to the tumoricidal phenotype by treatment with lymphokine supernatant containing macrophage activating factor (MAF). The functional relevance of enhanced expression of this antigen has been examined in mouse peritoneal macrophages treated with a variety of immunomodulatory agents and assayed for augmented macrophage-mediated defense reactions, including O2- production, microbicidal, and tumoricidal activity. An interferon-γ (IFN-γ) preparation produced by recombinant DNA technology induced a dose-dependent increase in expression of the 158.2 antigen in inflammatory macrophages which was accompanied by acquisition of microbicidal activity against Listeria monocytogenes. However, these cells did not express tumoricidal activity and induction of this property required concomitant exposure to lipopolysaccaharide (LPS). Similar results were obtained using macrophages elicited with pyran copolymer. Exposure to LPS alone induced enhanced expression of antigen 158.2 but did not elicit microbicidal activity. Macrophages challenged with IFN-α, IFN-β, MDP, and bestatin did not exhibit increased 158.2 and also failed to acquire tumoricidal activity when treated concomitantly with LPS. Collectively, these data indicate that the MA158.2 antibody recognizes an antigen expressed by macrophage populations displaying the so-called primed phenotype in which microbicidal activity is expressed but in which induction of tumoricidal activity requires the addition of a second signal such as LPS.
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