The human T cell hybridoma AC5 has been shown to produce an IgE-binding factor (IgEBF) upon stimulation with T cell mitogens, or anti-CD3 antibody. In this study, the line was established, propagated long term in a newly available serum-free, protein-free medium, and the factor it produced was analyzed. Serologic analysis, utilizing an ELISA assay and biotin-labeled human Ig of various isotypes, revealed that the IgEBF thus obtained was highly specific for the Ig epsilon-chain and was released primarily within the first 24 h after mitogen stimulation. Using biotin-labeled IgE as the detecting reagent, Western blot analysis of this factor demonstrated that the molecule was a single chain moiety of m.w. 64,000, and could be purified to apparent homogeneity by either DEAE or affinity (IgE column) chromatography. Detection of the IgEBF by ELISA and Western blot correlated well with activity in the previously employed rosette inhibition assay. Finally, purified IgEBF was found to suppress in vitro the production of IgE in the monoclonal human myeloma line U266, but not IgA or IgM-producing myelomas, providing evidence for the direct and specific regulatory action of this molecule on IgE-producing cells.

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