Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Summary A monospecific antibody to a plasminogen Kringle 4-binding tetramer protein of human blood, tetranectin, was applied to various human endocrine tissues employing the peroxidase-antiperoxidase staining technique. Endocrine cells with a known protein or glycoprotein hormonal production such as chromophils (pituitary), follicular and parafollicular cells (thyroid), chief cells (parathyroid), hepatocytes (liver), islet cells (pancreas) and ganglion cells of the adrenal medulla displayed a convincing, positive staining reaction for tetranectin, which varied from cell to cell within the different tissues. The liver showed a distinct and universal reaction within almost all hepatocytes, thus raising suspicion of producing the bulk of tetranectin to the blood. Tetranectin has recently been characterized as a lectin-like protein with amino acid sequence homology to the core protein of a rat chondrosarcoma proteoglycan. Proteoglycans have been demonstrated in secretory granules of rat pituitary and pancreatic islet cells, where they probably serve as modulators in hormonal production. The granular, cytoplasmic immunohistochemical localization of tetranectin demonstrated in this study combined with the fact that tetranectin is known to attach to plasminogen and promote plasminogen activation catalysed by tissue plasminogen activator suggests that this protein might have a dual function, serving both as a regulator in the seretion of certain hormones and as a participant in the regulation of the limited proteolysis, which is considered important for the activation of prohormones.
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