The effect of platelet activating factor (PAF) on the generation of cyclo-oxygenase-derived arachidonic acid metabolites was examined on purified eosinophils harvested from the peritoneal cavity of male guinea pigs. PAF produced a concentration-dependent increase in the amount of immunoreactive thromboxane B2 (TXB2) and PGE1/E2 released from these inflammatory cells at a relative molar ratio of 30:1. The EC50 of PAF was 20 to 40 nM and maximum stimulation (4.5-fold) of both prostanoids occurred at 1 microM PAF. The ability of PAF to generate TXA2 was rapid (t 1/2 = 9 s), transient (40 s), noncytotoxic, and noncompetitively antagonized by the PAF-receptor blocking drug, WEB 2086. On an equimolar (100 nM) basis, PAF was significantly more effective than C5a, fMLP, and PMA at stimulating TXB2 release but markedly less potent than the calcium ionophore, calcimycin. Pretreatment of eosinophils with the cyclo-oxygenase inhibitor flurbiprofen (8 microM for 5 min) abolished the ability of PAF to promote both TXB2 and PGE1/E2 release. Likewise, dazmegrel (50 microM for 5 min), a selective inhibitor of thromboxane synthetase, abolished PAF-stimulated TXB2 release but markedly augmented the elaboration of PGE1/E2. Inhibition of cyclo-oxygenase with flurbiprofen affected neither the ability of PAF to elevate the intracellular calcium ion concentration (measured by fura-2 fluorescence) nor its appetency to generate superoxide anions at any PAF concentration examined. It is concluded that activation of guinea pig eosinophils by PAF is receptor-mediated and independent of the concomitant generation of cyclo-oxygenase-derived excitatory prostanoids. Inasmuch as TXA2 may contribute to the pathogenesis of bronchial hyperreactivity, then these data implicate the eosinophil as a potential source of this lipid mediator.

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