Unstimulated P388D1 cells, as well as P388D1 cells stimulated with PHA-activated guinea pig T lymphocytes or LPS, produced a lymphocyte activating factor (LAF). In order to have a chemical basis for comparing this LAF with the LAF produced by normal macrophages, we have analyzed several biochemical characteristics of the P388D1-derived LAF. Sephadex G-75 chromatography of concentrated LAF-containing supernatants from cultures of unstimulated and T cell stimulated P388D1 cells demonstrated that the cell line LAF had a m.w. of approximately 16,000. On DEAE cellulose, the T cell-induced LAF fractionated into at least three major peaks and one minor peak. By using hydroxylapatite chromatography, two of the major peaks of LAF activity were separated from residual contaminating Lowry positive material.
LPS-stimulated P388D1 also produced LAF with a m.w. of 16,000. However, the LPS-induced LAF appeared to lack one of the DEAE peaks of LAF activity observed with the T cell-derived LAF. In contrast to LPS, T cells may induce the synthesis and/or release of an additional LAF component or enzymatically modify one or more of the LAF species that are produced in response to both stimulants.
Based on the results of chemical characterization studies, the P388D1-derived LAF appears to be similar in size and charge to the lymphocyte activating factor produced by normal macrophages.