The histamine release induced by compound 48/80, bradykinin or polyethylenimine with a molecular weight of 600 (PEI6) was inhibited by wheat germ agglutinin (WGA) and phytohemagglutinin E-subunits (PHA-E4), and the inhibition was specifically reversed by N-acetyl glucosamine and N-acetyl galactosamine, respectively. Concanavalin A (Con A) and phytohemagglutinin L-subunits (PHA-L4) did not inhibit the histamine release induced by compound 48/80, bradykinin or PEI6. The histamine release induced by substance P was also inhibited sugar-specifically by WGA and PHA-E4. The binding sites for compound 48/80, bradykinin, PEI6 and substance P, therefore, seemed to especially overlap each other. These binding sites were found to be glycoproteins having affinities to WGA and PHA-E4, but not to Con A and PHA-L4. The binding of WGA and PHA-E4 to the glycoproteins resulted in inhibition of the interaction between the basic secretagogues including bradykinin and substance P and their binding sites on the mast cells. The bindings of five lectins to mast cell glycoproteins were examined by lectin-blotting. Several glycoproteins, which had specific affinities to WGA and PHA-E4, but not to Con A and PHA-L4 were detected. We assumed that the binding sites for basic secretagogues which are coupled with histamine-releasing mechanisms exist among these glycoproteins. A 41-kDa protein (α-subunit of pertussis toxin-sensitive G protein) was not detected by WGA, suggesting that the binding sites for the basic secretagogues were not G proteins.
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