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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Relationship between phagosome acidification, phagosome-lysosome fusion, and mechanism of particle ingestion.

The fate of pathogens ingested by macrophages is dependent on phagosome acidification and fusion with different intracellular vesicles. Whereas the mode of particle recognition by the phagocyte seems the main determinant of phagosome-lysosome fusion, the influence of membrane reorganization, fusion events, and cell activation in phagosome acidification is not well known. We looked for a relationship between the nature of receptors involved in phagocytosis, phagosome acidification, and phagosome-lysosome fusion. Murine macrophage-like P388D1 cells were made to ingest sheep erythrocytes coated with immunoglobulin G (EIgG) or IgM and complement (EIgMC) or treated with glutaraldehyde and periodate ( EGP). The following results were obtained: (1) As expected, the adhesion of the three particle types was differentially inhibited by monoclonal antibodies specific for Fc gamma RII and CD11b/CD18. (2) The phagosomes containing all three particle types displayed similar acidification kinetics with a pH decrease to 6 within the first 10 min after ingestion. (3) Only phagosomes containing EIgG or EIgMC were fused with peroxidase-loaded secondary lysosomes. (4) Coating EGP with IgG only partially restored fusion, even when the surface density of IgG was markedly higher than found on EIgG. It is concluded that phagosome acidification and fusion are regulated by different mechanisms. Also, the lack of fusion observed with EGP is not entirely accounted for by the absence of stimulation of suitable receptors on the phagocyte membrane, because it cannot be restored by providing such a stimulus.[1]


  1. Relationship between phagosome acidification, phagosome-lysosome fusion, and mechanism of particle ingestion. Bouvier, G., Benoliel, A.M., Foa, C., Bongrand, P. J. Leukoc. Biol. (1994) [Pubmed]
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