Gc (vitamin D binding protein) binds to cytoplasm of all human lymphocytes and is expressed on B-cell membranes

Clin Immunol Immunopathol. 1984 May;31(2):282-95. doi: 10.1016/0090-1229(84)90248-4.


Peripheral blood lymphocytes were examined immunohistologically for evidence of interactions with Gc protein, a major vitamin D binding protein in serum. In the cytoplasm, binding sites for purified Gc were readily detectable in all cells, and these sites were only partially occupied by Gc. In contrast, on the membrane of viable cells, there was negligible evidence of binding of either the apo- or holoform of Gc protein, but substantial quantities of firmly bound immunoreactive endogenous Gc were detected. Separation experiments and double-label fluorescence with antisera recognizing defined phenotypic markers showed immunoreactive membrane Gc on 30-40% of unfractionated mononuclear cells and greater than 95% of monocytes or B cells. Only 5-8% of T cells were similarly reactive; these were not apparently confined to any given subset. Extraction of unfractionated cells with 6 M urea or solubilization in Nonidet P-40 released immunoreactive Gc protein, with physicochemical properties indistinguishable from those of Gc purified from serum (apparent MW 56K; pI 4.8-5.1). These findings indicate that membrane Gc may represent another surface immunofluorescence marker for B cells, and may play a role in immunocyte function.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • B-Lymphocytes / metabolism*
  • Buffers
  • Carrier Proteins / blood*
  • Carrier Proteins / immunology
  • Cell Membrane / metabolism
  • Cytoplasm / immunology
  • Cytoplasm / metabolism*
  • Fluorescent Antibody Technique
  • Humans
  • Isoelectric Focusing
  • Molecular Weight
  • Monocytes / metabolism
  • Peptide Hydrolases / pharmacology
  • Receptors, Cell Surface / analysis
  • Vitamin D*
  • Vitamin D-Binding Protein


  • Buffers
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Receptors, Cell Surface
  • Vitamin D-Binding Protein
  • Vitamin D
  • Peptide Hydrolases