The recovery of human polymorphonuclear leucocytes from sublytic complement attack is mediated by changes in intracellular free calcium

Biochem J. 1985 Oct 1;231(1):205-8. doi: 10.1042/bj2310205.


Using polymorphonuclear leucocyte-erythrocyte ghost hybrids entrapping the calcium-activated photoprotein obelin, we have demonstrated that sublytic amounts of the complement membrane attack complex induce a rapid but transient increase in intracellular free calcium ion concentration ([Ca2+]i). This increase in [Ca2+]i occurs prior to, and is required for, rapid removal of membrane attack complexes from the cell surface. The increase in [Ca2+]i is not only due to increased influx from outside the cell, but also results from mobilization of intracellular stores. The possible mechanism of mobilization of calcium, and the importance of an increase in [Ca2+]i as a mediator of recovery processes in nucleated cells, are discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Calcium / blood*
  • Complement Membrane Attack Complex
  • Complement System Proteins / pharmacology*
  • Erythrocyte Membrane / metabolism
  • Hemolysis
  • Humans
  • Hybridization, Genetic
  • Luminescent Proteins
  • Neutrophils / drug effects
  • Neutrophils / metabolism*


  • Complement Membrane Attack Complex
  • Luminescent Proteins
  • obelin
  • Complement System Proteins
  • Calcium